Sri Lanka place names given in Plus Code on app

Please fill out the following sections to the best of your ability, it will help us investigate bugs if we have this information at the outset. Screenshots are especially helpful, so please provide those if you can.

Platform Android

App version number, if a mobile app issue (shown under Settings or About): 1.24.0

Screenshots of what you are seeing:
An observation: ntnttn
Desktop upload:

App upload:

Certain area app upload including misspelled name (Palaiyoothu, not Palaiyoottu, only in app):

Description of problem (please provide a set of steps we can use to replicate the issue, and make as many as you need.):

Step 1: Upload an observation on app

Step 2: Add a location in Sri Lanka

Step 3: It shows as plus code


[Not iNaturalist Staff]
The gibberish code you’re seeing is whats known as an areas Plus Code (
It essentially is a generally more ‘accessible’ and readable alternative to lat, long numbers, designed to act as an address name for places with poor street address coverage.

So essentially what you’re seeing when you enter the coords is Google’s attempt to reverse geocode (give a name to coordinates) the location of the sighting, in this case in lieu of steet names and a number it gives you the Plus Code along with the general locality.

1 Like

Topic changed. However language names are much more convenient. Thanks for the explanation!

No worries, I don’t think there’s much iNat can do about it without switching the service they use for reverse geocoding, basically Google is going ‘I don’t know the street address for the coordinates you gave, so I’ll tell you its Plus-Code street address’ which is the most precise global reverse-geocoding system available.

This pic for example shows the area covered by H6M6+75 Trincomalee.


Then we should make a new report for the “Palaiyoottu” typo.

And this is actually a new thing. I hadn’t had it before. Maybe the staff can implement a area-based naming system. Eg. calling this location “Palaiyoothu, Trincomalee, Sri Lanka”.