iNaturalist App

The iNaturalist app was created by the California Academy of Sciences and the National Geographic Society as a joint initiative that strives to get everyone outside to observe the natural world around us! iNaturalist helps you identify the animals and plants in your area and connect with a community of over 750,000 scientists and naturalists. This community works together to help you learn more about nature while also allowing you the opportunity to create research quality data for scientists to use to better understand and protect our natural world! Every observation contributes to biodiversity science. iNaturalist shares your findings with scientific data repositories to help scientists use your data, all you must do is observe and share!

Discussion: When you upload and participate with iNatuarlist you are able to make a difference within your local community. By providing important information for scientists, you are contributing to efforts being made to restore and preserve our natural world all while exploring and learning about your local nature!

Handout: How to Use iNatuarlist

Activity: City Nature Challenge 2020

  • Description: Every year, iNaturalist partners with communities all over the world in a Earth Day competition where people work together within their community to compete against others to see who can observe, document, and share the most findings! Due to the current state of the world, in relation to COVID-19, the 2020 City Nature Challenge is no longer a competition but instead an event that encourages the sharing of observations online with a digital community. “We need to celebrate the healing power of nature as people document their local biodiversity to the best of their ability.”
  • Materials
    • Phone or camera for pictures
    • Access to iNatualist (app or website)
  • Next Step:
    • Although the City Nature Challenge is only one week out of the year, you can upload pictures and videos whenever you want! Continue to take pictures and make IDs so you can not only learn about the nature around you, but you can help others that aren’t able to get outside on their own.