Using Identify to Annotate Observations


If I’m in the mood of not wanting to think too hard but still contribute to iNat, I’ll use the Identify page to annotate observations. Many, many observations lack any annotations and for some taxa it’s quite easy to go through them and add a life stage, sex, or plant phenology annotation without much specific knowledge. If enough observations of a taxon are annotated, we can start to get some cool data on them, eg for Monarchs (although look at how many still need a life stage annotation!):

Here’s my approach:

  1. On the Identify page, here are the basic settings I’ll use choose for life stage annotations:

The URL for this is:

This should show me all Needs ID and RG observations lacking a life stage annotation, sorted randomly.

  1. I’ll choose a taxon compatible with life stage, for example Lepidoptera.

  2. Then, when I click on the first observation, I’ll make sure to go to the Annotations tab. There is a handy list of keyboard commands on the bottom left-hand corner.

  1. It’s pretty easy to rapidly go through the observations and tell which ones are of eggs, larvae, pupae, or adults and add annotations for those.

That’s about it!


Ways to help out on iNat - wiki
Observation chart by sex on taxon pages