Changes to photo submission for the 2022 Coffs Coast Sea Slug Census
This year, we will be moving away from email submission of sea slug photos to direct upload to iNaturalist. For those who have not come across iNaturalist, it is now the world’s largest repository of citizen science images of life on Earth. The reasons we are moving to this platform are many – the key ones are listed below:
- Your photos have a much greater (global) reach, well beyond their use in the Report generated for the Census.
- All submissions can be reviewed and commented upon by all participants, and all other users of iNaturalist including world experts, to provide consensus on identification (termed “Research Grade”).
- Every “Research Grade” photo provides an additional distributional record which is shared across key biodiversity databases, including Atlas of Living Australia.
- Feedback is very quick and a great learning process for participants. Not only can you suggest your own ID, but you can also check for matches through iNaturalist’s extensive photo-database.
- All images of sea slug species found within the nominated area and time period can be readily found by checking the specific project links (this will be set up beforehand as part of the overall project ‘infrastructure’ – your images will appear here even if you don’t register with the Project).
- Every participant can see all the images submitted for the program, not just those selected for the Report.
- The data processing function in iNaturalist automatically compiles the leader board in terms of submitted photos (observations) and number of species for participants.
- Participants can build a wider profile to contribute to global documentation of biodiversity and its distribution. This is a very rewarding process and gives you the opportunity to expand your citizen science contributions beyond sea slugs – it’s quite addictive!
For those who are not already contributing to iNaturalist, here are some links to get you started.
The project page, Coffs Coast Sea Slug Census 2022, is here
If you want to join the Census but have difficulties joining iNaturalist, please let us know and we’ll make sure your observations are included.