iNaturalist How To — Friends of Rye Nature Center (2024)

iNaturalist is an excellent learning tool for amateur and veteran naturalists alike! This app allows users to take pictures of observations, record audio, and choose from a variety of suggested species. Your observations are then available for others to see and confirm or deny the identification. iNaturalist draws from various databases, allowing it to catalog and identify plants, animals, fungi, mushrooms, and protists (i.e. slime molds). The great thing about iNaturalist is you can us it to identify plants and animals you find anywhere you go!

Our project, “Biota of Rye Nature Center and Preserve,” catalogs discoveries that staff and visitors have already made at the Nature Center. It’s a great place start to see what you may find on your next visit! Check out "Biota of Rye Nature Center and Preserve" on iNaturalist.

how to use inaturalist: Step by step guide

iNaturalist How To — Friends of Rye Nature Center (1)

Step One

Download the free iNaturalist app to your smart phone from your Apple or Android app store and create an iNaturalist account using an email address and secure password.

iNaturalist How To — Friends of Rye Nature Center (4)

iNaturalist How To — Friends of Rye Nature Center (5)

Step two

Make observations! Observations can be of any living thing around you. Use iNaturalist to share or help you identify your discovery.

To make a new observation click the camera button on an iPhone or the + button on an Android. You can also upload previously taken pictures or audio recordings from your phone’s gallery.

iNaturalist How To — Friends of Rye Nature Center (6)


Take photos (from multiple angles if possible) or record sounds using the camera icon in the top left corner. When sharing observations of landscaped plants, please mark them as “captive or cultivated.”

The when and where fields should get filled in automatically. If this doesn’t happen, check your app permissions/privacy in your phone’s settings.

iNaturalist How To — Friends of Rye Nature Center (7)


Try to identify what you saw. Press “What did you see?” for a list of suggestions based on appearance and what is typically found in your location. Look through the suggestions and select the closest fit.

It’s okay if you’re not an expert. You can narrow your observation down to a category from the appropriate biological kingdom — this can be as simple as “insect” or “bird”.

Even if you’re not sure what you’ve seen, other users will be able to view your observation and make suggestions. With two or more positive identifications your observation will become research grade and further respected by the citizen science community!

iNaturalist How To — Friends of Rye Nature Center (8)


Observations should be automatically included in our collection based on its geo-tag but if you make an observation while at the Rye Nature Center, please share to our “project.” Under the Projects tab, search for “Biota of Rye Nature Center and Preserve.” Press “join” to become part of the project. You can select this project when identifying an organism spotted on the RNC property or edit an old observation to mark it as part of the project. This allows you to explore the observations made by others at the Nature Center!

In addition to being an excellent learning opportunity, iNaturalist is an important citizen science tool that engages the public in observing the natural world. By increasing the amount of accurate data collected, studies become more effective and conservationists are able to advance their projects.

iNaturalist How To — Friends of Rye Nature Center (9)


Use the Explore option to see what other people in your area have been observing. You can also look up a specific organism to see where it has been spotted nearby and view observations on a map. Have fun familiarizing yourself with your local biota!

Stay in touch with our little world. Sign up for our email list!

Sign up now!

iNaturalist How To — Friends of Rye Nature Center (2024)


How do I use iNaturalist to ID plants? ›

How to use the Identify tool
  1. You can filter observations by taxon, place, or other filters in the filter menu.
  2. Click on an image to show more detail for each observation. ...
  3. Use the buttons to add an ID, comment, or agree with the current observation taxon.
  4. To add a new ID, click "Add ID", enter a taxon, and click Save.
Oct 19, 2023

How can you add a new plant observation to the iNaturalist app? ›

Take a photo (or select a photo from your photo library, or decide to just make a text observation). Fill in whatever details you want to add.

How many people use iNaturalist? ›

Type of siteCitizen science
Users7.6 million registered users (May 2024)
6 more rows

How can I ID a plant? ›

If you are dealing with a flowering plant in bloom, identification can be as easy as counting the number of the flower's petals, sepals, pistils, or stamens. You can note these quantities and combinations to look up later, and cross reference with other information you have gathered.

How do I get the app that identifies plants? ›

PlantSnap Pro is a plant identification app that is easy to install, set up and use. To set up, you just need to give the app access to your smartphone's camera and gallery for the app to function.

How do I activate my naturalist? ›

Instead of hunting animals, you'll be asked to sedate and sample them for a new character called Harriet Davenport. Davenport is the main quest giver in the Naturalist Update, and you'll have to speak to her to activate the role and progress through the ranks.

Is iNaturalist free? ›

iNaturalist is free for anyone to use thanks to the generous support of many organizations and individuals.

How do you unlock naturalist? ›

Simply head to the town of Strawberry and visit the Welcome Center. A cutscene will play introducing two brand new characters who will be integral to the player's new role. After the cutscene players will be able to purchase the Naturalist starter kit for 25 gold bars, which will allow them to begin their new role.

What do the colors mean on iNaturalist? ›

Pink (kind of a Magenta) = Fungi Including Lichens. Brown Red = Kelp, Diatoms, and Allies. Purple = Protozoans. Gray = Unknown, Prokaryotes, Bacteria, and Viruses (see discussion of the problems with this grey icon here:

What is the National Geographic plant app? ›

iNaturalist allows you to create high-quality data for science and conservation by simply observing the plants and animals you see in nature. Naturalists and scientists from around the world will help identify what's in your photographs and together you'll create research-grade data for conservation.

What is similar to iNaturalist? ›

Top 7 Alternatives & Competitors
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  • 107,987. 51,945. 607.15K. 1.6. ...
  • 59,509. 17,616. 1.31M. 2.2. ...
  • 57,795. 34,861. 1.35M. 1.5. ...
  • 43,368. 10,532. 1.94M. 1.8. ...
  • 11,441. 7,352. 8.84M. 5.3.

Do scientists use iNaturalist? ›

Scientists are actively using iNaturalist as a platform to recruit citizen scientists and record data from citizen scientists on specific projects and as a platform for new discoveries and observations. New species continue to be discovered through iNaturalist observations.

Who runs iNaturalist? ›

In 2014 iNaturalist became an initiative of the California Academy of Sciences and a joint initiative with National Geographic Society in 2017.

Do researchers use iNaturalist? ›

iNaturalist observations are used in thousands of scientific publications. Many of them are using data that are shared with the Global Biodiversity Information Facility as part of the iNaturalist Research-Grade Observations dataset.

What is the best app to use to identify plants? ›

PictureThis® identifies 1,000,000+ plants every day with 98% accuracy - better than most human experts. Get your gardening questions answered and become a “green thumb” with the plant identification power of PictureThis!

What is the difference between the Seek and iNaturalist app? ›

Seek gives you a suggestion of what you might be looking at, and that's usually the end of it. Using iNaturalist, I register a guess as to what I'm seeing, sometimes with the help of the AI, and then other naturalists tell me what I've actually found, or help me figure it out.

How to do plant identification on iphone? ›

Use Visual Look Up to identify plants, dog breeds, and more from images
  1. Select a photo. ...
  2. Tap the Info button. ...
  3. Tap the icon that appears in the photo or below the photo. ...
  4. Tap to learn more after Visual Look Up provides results from Siri Knowledge and the web.
Dec 4, 2023

Does iNaturalist identify weeds? ›

Whether it is a tree in your neighborhood or a weed in your front yard, the iNaturalist community can help you identify a wide variety of species.


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