Trying to view large numbers of species in Explore

Hi There,

I tried to get explore the specieslist of the state Victoria in Australia.
It says there were 16,079 species reported on iNaturalist
When clicking op the species tab
only 2000 were shown? Where did the other 14,000 go?

The 2nd link also shows 16,079 for me.

Did you maybe select additional filters at some point? Can you provide a screenshot of what you’re seeing, along with the Filters dropdown?

screenshots would probably help show the issue more clearly.

I thank that’s just how it goes on the site unfortunately. The same thing happens when you look at the species tab of any area with more than a couple of thousand species. I do wish there was a way to look at the remaining species that aren’t shown, especially those with very few observations.

oh, i see… you’re actually counting the taxa that appear on the page.

i’m fairly certain the 2000 limit (whatever it is) is intentional (not a bug), probably to keep the page from consuming too much memory and also to prevent folks from getting excess data unnecessarily. the limit used to be 500.

it’s possible to get up to 10000 records from the API for any given set of parameters.

would be roughly equivalent to:

… and can be visualized by humans a little better via:

the nice thing about using the API directly is that you can sort by ascending count rather than descending by adding &order=asc to either of the two URLs above. that would allow you to effectively get roughly 20000 species for a set of parameters, since you can approach from both directions (10000 asc + 10000 desc).

note: usually, the API will return only 10000 records for any given set of parameters, but this one seems to allow you to get >10000 records. i’m not sure what the actual limit is, if it is limited.


Ah, yes. thanks for your elaborate answer (also thanks to the other respondants by the way)!
This is what I meant yes! So you think it’s intentional and not a bug? Thing is, it’s impossible to get this data of these missing species from other pages on iNaturalist, at least i can’t find them. So it seemed a bug to me.

API is somewhat abracadabra to me, i always thought this was more a developpers thing. However, your second link (the jumear,github…-link) is very convenient! This was exactly what i was looking for (although it would be nice to view them in the iNaturalist grid view for better views of the pictures)

Let’s hope iNaturalist could devellop a similar thing, to show all the species!
But many thanks for now!!!

yup. i looked at the code back in the day, and it seemed fairly clear that the developer intended to increase the limit beyond 500 but keep it still within some higher limit.

i don’t really understand your use case. are you really loading and scrolling through 1000+ taxa to do what? just to browse? to look for a particular organism?

if you’re looking for a particular organism, it seems to me like you could use the Explore page just fine if you filtered the results down a little more. for example, if you’re looking for moths, filter for moths first.

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Haha,… you think I’m a little crazy? LOL
But actually yes, I like to see which species were seen in a certain area and not only the 1000 most common ones. And most of the time, the ones less often reported are the interesting species to look for. When I intend to go to a certain area it’s always nice to get an idea of what can be seen. Once in a flow I’m not bothered to see pictures of all 16,000 species… It’s some sort of natural interest, amazement on the biodiversity… something like that, I think. That’s why I was exploring the state’s list.

Being a non-Australian a list view doesn’t mean much to me, since I don’t know most of the species by name. (otherwise a listview would be fine)


no grid view, but you should now be able to view larger photos in the page noted above by adding &options=bigger_image to the URL parameter list. (ex:

since the desire for bigger images has been indicated elsewhere before, i’ve also added this option to and

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iNaturalist does intentionally limit the number of species that you can scroll through, as @pisum described. In general, filtering down to a smaller number of species (e.g. taxonomically) is recommended whenever you’re running up against iNat’s limits for performance purposes.

Since this isn’t a bug, I’m going to reclassify it to General and rename it from “Species shown inconsistent to species reported” to “Trying to view large numbers of species in Explore” so you can continue the discussion if needed.