Spectrograph allowed?

I had been putting off going through all my audio files because I knew I would need to edit most of them. I finally downloaded Audacity and started getting to work so that I can upload the stuff I recorded during the City Nature Challenge. BTW, I read about using low pass and high pass filters, but I found a much easier way to do it is to use the effect on Audacity called Spectral Delete.

Anyways, my question is: If I don’t have a photo of the animal, is it acceptable to upload an image of the spectrograph? If so, would it be okay to use the colored spectrograph that I get with Audacity or should I use another program that will give me one in black and white?


No image is necessary and there is some debate about the acceptability of using an image of a spectrogram. I don’t usually personally find the addition useful for my IDs, because if I need to look at one, I can generate it to my preferred specs easily enough.

I also find I usually do better when audio is unmodified. Sometimes a filter can change the way something sounds in unexpected ways.

staff response:


I feel it’s necessary to include kueda’s follow-up from that thread to clarify that as of now there is no official policy w/r/t spectrograms:

So – yes, they’re allowed.


I’m amplifying so you can actually hear it. The low and high pass filters sometimes make it sound weird. I found that the spectral delete doesn’t do that. I usually just use it to remove the background noise (bottom of the spectrogram), but I also just used it to remove a cardinal singing in the distance easily because it was much higher pitched than the frog I was recording. https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/116114094

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Thanks guys. I’ll stick with using no image.

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