Why can I not find the town I live in?

I am trying to utilize INaturalist as a central hub for members of my towns community to find our towns observations in one place, a project. The problem is when I go to the include location input spot and type my towns name, I cannot find it. It is really hard to limit the scope of the project to the town if it is not an option in the location section as it will show all the users observations from everywhere. This is not very helpful. How can I get my town added to the list of locations?

welcome to the forum

can you clarify a few things

  1. What’s the name of your town/where is it
  2. Which searchbar are you using?
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I’m assuming this is your area?

There are a few towns with the same name, so you may have to enter the state abbreviation too for it to show up.

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A project like the one you describe needs to have a place associated with it. and that place needs to be an area, not just a point. Areas like counties, states, provinces and countries are already defined in Google Maps, so they are also defined in iNaturalist. But towns are not. You’ll need to draw a border for your town as a kml file, save it as a Place in iNaturalist, and use that as the place file for your project. This tutorial may help: https://forum.inaturalist.org/t/how-to-draw-a-new-place-in-google-mymaps-for-uploading-to-inaturalist/41063, or just ask someone on this forum to help you make the Place file.



then see:

assuming your town is Stratford, NH, the second method above can provide you an easy way to get a KML file:


awesome, @pisum!

To clarify the town is Stratford, NH or North Stratford, NH. Zip code is 03590.

I used every search bar within the app and site and the results are all the same, there are none.

Thank you, so I’m not sure I created the correct file but a few years ago I created a Route on Gaia GPS around the entire Boulder of Stratford. I saved that route as a KML file. Will that work?

So I guess it is an observation include place that I am trying to do with Stratford, New Hampshire so I can filter observations that are within town boundaries.

Thank you very much. This is very thorough. I have gotten all the way to making the KML file but now I don’t know how to add it to iNaturalist I’m confused.

Thanks everyone for your help I think I figured out where my actual problem is I do not have 50 verified observation so I cannot add a place.

I’ve made it all the way to creating the KML file now I just need to get the other 25 or so observations verified so that I can add a place.


OK, then come back for more help if you need it.

just to clarify, the requirement is verifiable, not verified observations.


Both names show up just fine. Go to the ‘Explore’ tab, then enter those names into the ‘Location’ field.

Both Stratford, NH & North Stratford, NH show up as places with their boundaries.

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Yes, the reason why they both work now is because I just entered them four days ago. I have now gotten my 50 observations was able to upload the caramel file and create the location is Strafford New Hampshire municipality

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Thank you very much. I got my 50 observations and I was able to follow the other guys instructions and everything seems to work now I now have Strafford New Hampshire as a municipality location in iNaturalist.

Thank you

They worked before that. They worked the first time I had asked if that areas was your location and provided a link to the town area.