פברואר 26, 2024

And the Glorious Conclusion!

The Needs ID pile has shrunk by 34,766 observations in just 48 hours! (48 hours of hard, dedicated work, I might add.)

As best as I can estimate, 1,118 new plant observations were added on Saturday and Sunday, as well (I can't figure out how to get the Friday evening new observations.) That means we (and the rest of the iNat identifiers) cleared at least 35,844 (34,766 plus 1,118) observations. That really is just amazing!

And I hope you had as much fun as I did. There were so many notifications coming and going all weekend and I really enjoyed that.

One last surprise: @arboretum_amy was kind enough to give me the form of an API query to determine how many IDs each of you made in the past 48 hours. Here are the results, in alphabetical order, for everyone who contributed:
@apgarm - 718
@babs22 – 45
@brothernorbert – 1,515
@bryanconnolly - 365
@carex - 64
@cbuelow45 - 37
@ceaustin - 52
@cgbb2004 – 1,695
@chr3951 - 75
@cobrien207 – 5,483
@conboy - 14
@connormac – 15
@cs16-levi - 128
@curiousbynature - 288
@ddubois2 - 558
@donlubin - 530
@edfuchs – 3
@er1kksen - 835
@gak0 - 130
@hcoste – 4,276
@jackcadwell – 1,442
@jackieschnurr - 23
@jsolfrian - 227
@karro_frost - 734
@kdodgeart - 34
@kellyfuerstenberg - 3
@kennamae – 12
@klodonnell – 53
@lmtaylor - 746
@lynnharper – 2,629
@margaretcurtin - 68
@maryah – 5,227
@mjpapay - 128
@mohale - 25
@mollyopsis - 1
@natemarchessault – 1,435
@no6km - 25
@nsharp - 69
@nycnatureobserver - 176
@patswain - 347
@peakaytea – 6,090
@quietlymagical - 366
@rinaturalist – 2,106
@robbieedun - 2
@russ_cohen - 37
@slamonde - 165
@stephanieradner - 118
@tarpinian - 73
@trscavo - 467
@tsn – 773
@turtless - 225
@vicki_l - 20
@vickidoo - 16
@xris - 1
@zihaowang - 1

Finally, please let me know, either in a comment or a private message, what you liked or didn't like about this event and how we could improve it going forward. Thank you all so much! You did incredible work, seriously, and I'm going to go boast about it on the forum.

הועלה ב-פברואר 26, 2024 12:16 לפנה"צ על ידי lynnharper lynnharper | 29 תגובות | הוספת תגובה

פברואר 25, 2024

Two and a Half Hours Left

We are down 31,590 Needs ID observations from where we started. That is MORE than 2% of the whole giant pile! If I had any brain left, I'd think of some fancy way to say this is amazing, but this is all you get: THIS IS AMAZING!!

(You know, if we did this every weekend for a year and no one submitted any new plant observations, we'd clean them all up.) (We are not doing that. Just NOT.)

הועלה ב-פברואר 25, 2024 09:33 אחה"צ על ידי lynnharper lynnharper | 0 תגובות | הוספת תגובה

Twelve Hours Left

Apparently, some of you never sleep, because the plant Needs ID pile is now down by just over 22,000 from where we started. I really can't believe it. Who wants to guess the ultimate number? Two percent of the pile? That's over 30,000! And who knows how many individual IDs we'd have to make to reach that!

But it's possible. Definitely within reach.

If you're getting a little bored with your usual identifying tactics, here are a few links for different ways to attack the pile.

At the Flowering Plants level: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/identify?iconic_taxa=Plantae&place_id=52339%2C48&taxon_id=47125&lrank=subphylum&hrank=subphylum

Pre-Mavericks: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/identify?iconic_taxa=Plantae&place_id=52339%2C48&project_id=156949

Anyone for the leftovers from last year's City Nature Challenge? https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/identify?iconic_taxa=Plantae&place_id=52339%2C48&project_id=146322

I spent part of yesterday checking Cultivated on observations from the Bridge of Flowers in Shelburne Falls, MA, and the Smith College Botanic Garden in Northampton, MA. They are both beautiful places to visit, but probably 95% of the plants there are cultivated. So choose your favorite public garden or university campus and push observations to Casual, where appropriate.

Finally, if you enjoy wading through pages and pages of unidentifiable photos, you could look at mosses: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/identify?iconic_taxa=Plantae&place_id=52339%2C48&taxon_id=311249

Stay warm and have fun!

הועלה ב-פברואר 25, 2024 12:43 אחה"צ על ידי lynnharper lynnharper | 16 תגובות | הוספת תגובה

פברואר 24, 2024

The Halfway Point - And I'm Astounded!

I had to check this number twice: just over 18,000 fewer plant Needs ID observations than when we started. WOW! That is MORE than I thought we could do in 48 hours, and here we've reached that goal in just 24 hours. You all do good work!

I hope you're enjoying yourselves and I hope you take a break now and then (Seriously, it's OK if you get 8 hours sleep tonight.) I'll be back in the morning with the 36-hour numbers, and then we'll push on to victory!

(Eighteen thousand. I can't believe it.)

הועלה ב-פברואר 24, 2024 11:55 אחה"צ על ידי lynnharper lynnharper | 0 תגובות | הוספת תגובה

In Just 12 Hours

Overnight, the number of Needs ID plant observations has shrunk by just over 4,000 - that's amazing! Keep up the great work!

הועלה ב-פברואר 24, 2024 11:50 לפנה"צ על ידי lynnharper lynnharper | 2 תגובות | הוספת תגובה

פברואר 23, 2024

Here We Go!

It is just a few minutes before 7 PM on Friday night. Our plant identification marathon is about to start!

Right now, there are 1,568,580 plant observations needing IDs in New England and New York. Our goal is to make a noticeable dent in this number in 48 hours. With 67 project members (!!), to reduce this Needs ID pile by 1% or 15,686, each of us only needs to make 235 or so IDs that move an observation to Research Grade or Casual (and there need to be no new plant observations). I think that's doable!

Here's a link to all of the plant observations needing IDs: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/identify?iconic_taxa=Plantae&place_id=52339,48. Ignore that iNat says New England in the Place box at the top of the grid of observations; the fact that place_id=52339,48 is in the URL means that this link includes both New England (52339) and New York (48).

I've added some observations to the project that seemed interesting to me (and were beyond my botanical skills). Have a look at them if you get a chance, and feel free to add others that might interest everyone.

I'll be back now and then with progress/cheerleading posts. In the meantime, enjoy yourselves, learn something, ask questions whenever you need to, remember to filter and tag others, and take a break now and then. And thank you so much for participating!

הועלה ב-פברואר 23, 2024 11:55 אחה"צ על ידי lynnharper lynnharper | 2 תגובות | הוספת תגובה

Making Sure Everyone Gets These Posts (I Hope)

Since there seems to be some concern that not all project members aren't receiving notifications of journal posts unless I tag them in the post, here I'm going to tag all the members (67 of you!) and link to the most recent journal posts, in the hope that everyone will see this. And I'll be back this evening with the very last pre-event post!

Post of Feb 21: Getting to Research Grade or Casual Status

Post of Feb. 22: Efficient Identifying

Post of Feb. 22: An In-person ID-a-thon Event (this one is in Medford, MA, on Sunday afternoon)

Post of Feb. 22: Yet Another In-person Event (this one is in Athol, MA, on Saturday afternoon, plus there's mention in the comments of people getting together at the Red Barn at Cornell in Ithaca, NY)

@apgarm, @babs22, @brothernorbert, @bryanconnolly, @carex, @cbuelow45, @ceaustin, @cgbb2004, @chr3951, @cobrien207, @conboy, @connormac, @cs16-levi, @curiousbynature, @dani_lilienkamp, @ddubois2, @donlubin, @edfuchs, @erica_arborea, @gak0, @hcoste, @ikinahandcr, @jackcadwell, @jackieschnurr, @jformanorth, @jljones, @jsolfrian, @karro_frost, @kathie13, @kellyfuerstenberg, @kennamae, @klodonnell, @kristishepler, @lmtaylor, @margaretcurtin, @maryah, @michaelnj, @mjpapay, @mohale, @mollyopsis, @natemarchessault, @nmes, @no6km, @nsharp, @nycnatureobserver, @olenah, @patswain, @peakaytea, @quietlymagical, @rinaturalist, @robbieedun, @russ_cohen, @slamonde, @splnddfairywren, @stephanieradner, @tarpinian, @tomaszavada, @trscavo, @tsn, @turtless, @vicki_l, @vickidoo, @wernerehl, @xris, @yayemaster, @zihaowang

הועלה ב-פברואר 23, 2024 06:45 אחה"צ על ידי lynnharper lynnharper | 0 תגובות | הוספת תגובה

פברואר 22, 2024

Yet Another In-person Event!

I live too far away to take up @quietlymagical on her lovely invitation to gather at her house Sunday afternoon to make IDs together, so I decided to throw an event of my own in my own town. You are all hereby invited to join me Saturday afternoon, Feb. 24th, from 1 to 4 PM, at the Millers River Environmental Center, 110 Main St., Athol, MA. Bring your laptops or smartphones and help make identifications; we'll provide wi-fi and snacks. Thanks go to @davidhsmall for allowing this to happen at the center on short notice!

הועלה ב-פברואר 22, 2024 11:16 אחה"צ על ידי lynnharper lynnharper | 2 תגובות | הוספת תגובה

An In-Person ID-a-thon Event

Laura (@quietlymagical) has very generously extended this invitation to everyone!

Open invite: Laura (@quietlymagical) is inviting any local iNat enthusiasts to an in-person ID-a-thon event at her home in Medford MA, Sunday Feb 25, 1-4pm. Feel free to drop in and out. Bring your laptop or smartphone, make some IDs, and meet some local naturalists! Wi-Fi, tea, snacks provided.

Comment here if you're interested, and Laura will message you her address.

הועלה ב-פברואר 22, 2024 04:04 אחה"צ על ידי lynnharper lynnharper | 3 תגובות | הוספת תגובה

Efficient Identifying

With more than one and a half million observations of plants in New England and New York that currently need identifying, we will have to work hard this coming weekend to reach our goal of making a noticeable dent in this giant pile of Needs ID observations. So, in this post I'm going to give some hints for how to make IDs in time-efficient ways. If you have other suggestions, please add them in the comments below.

Here's the link to all the plant observations in New England and New York that we're working on this weekend: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/identify?iconic_taxa=Plantae&place_id=52339,48. That's the view in the Identify mode; here's the same information in the Explore mode, if you prefer to work from that: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations?place_id=52339,48&quality_grade=needs_id&iconic_taxa=Plantae

No matter which mode you prefer, if you just start at the beginning and scroll through looking for plants you can ID, you're likely to get frustrated fairly quickly because it will feel like you can help maybe only 1 in 30 observations, if that. You might hit pages of leafless brown twigs, or microscopic photos of algae, or out-of-focus green stuff you're not even sure is a Vascular Plant. This is when you might feel the need to go fold laundry or vacuum the living room or something useless like that (hint: do all that today, before the ID-a-thon starts).

Instead, it helps to filter. For example, if you want to look at observations that are already at the species level and therefore might need just one more Agree click to reach Research Grade, you can select the Species level in the high and low Rank boxes in the Filters, like this: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/identify?iconic_taxa=Plantae&place_id=52339%2C48&hrank=species&lrank=species

For real efficiency, you can filter for just one species. Here's an example of filtering for White Meadowsweet, Spiraea alba: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/identify?iconic_taxa=Plantae&place_id=52339%2C48&taxon_id=126823 (more than 900 observations needing IDs!).

Or filter for a particular date or month. If going through more than 900 White Meadowsweet observations seems tedious, filter for White Meadowsweet observations made in June and July, when it's likely the plants are in bloom: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/identify?iconic_taxa=Plantae&place_id=52339%2C48&taxon_id=126823&month=6%2C7

If you're not sure how to filter for a group of observations you're interested in, let me know in a comment or message and I'll help you construct a filter that works. Poales on Mt. Washington in August? Marine algae around Long Island? Your particular town? We can get you there.

Tagging in Other Identifiers
Another way to move observations to Research Grade efficiently is to team up with each other by tagging, or mentioning, other active identifiers. This brings an observation to the attention of a second identifier quickly, rather than leaving it to chance and hoping someone comes along.

Here's an example of how that works: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/173820677. I filtered for the genus Epipactis and came upon an observation where the original observer chose the wrong species in the genus (a mis-click, perhaps? we all do that). Another identifier identified it as Epipactis helleborine, I agreed with that ID, and I mentioned @peakaytea in a comment. Peakaytea swiftly looked at the observation, agreed with the ID as E. helleborine, and the observation became Research Grade (thanks, Patti!).

So, if an observation needs just one more ID besides your own, please tag someone to come help. Feel free to tag me, although I'll warn you there are many plants I can't ID, and if you feel comfortable having other people tag you in, please mention that in a comment below.

Cultivated Plants
Filtering and tagging are two ways to move observations quickly to Research Grade, but on the other hand, you are likely to come across many, many observations of cultivated plants that are not labeled as Not Wild. Once they are labeled Not Wild, they become Casual and drop out of the Needs ID pile. iNaturalist prioritizes wild organisms, so cultivated plants and captive animals are Casual observations.

Particularly in April, May, and September, when biology teachers tend to assign iNat to their students, those students haven't quite grasped the concept of wild vs. cultivated, much less remembered to mark observations of garden plants as Not Wild. So, if you see a plant in a pot, or a street tree in its small square of earth, or a shrub or tree with a circle of mulch around it, please give it as best as an ID as you can can (even just Dicot) and mark it as cultivated.

If you're a gardener and know the common garden plants in our region, it can be productive to filter for, say, Delphinium or Tulipa, and look closely to see if the observations are of garden plants. This also works for university campuses and botanic gardens, as it's quite likely many of the larger plants in these sites were planted by humans. You could even filter for, say, the genera Rhododendron or Spiraea or Rosa and pick out the cultivated observations.

I hope these hints help you make the most of your time making IDs. Please add any hints you have in thew comments below.

הועלה ב-פברואר 22, 2024 02:22 אחה"צ על ידי lynnharper lynnharper | 7 תגובות | הוספת תגובה