Accuracy: the least obvious, most important data element

The four most important elements of an observation are a photo, a date, the coordinates (i.e., latitude and longitude), and a community-supported identification. When an observation has these four elements, it is considered “research grade”. However, there is a fifth element that is nearly as important as these other elements in determining the value of an observation to researchers, but it often gets overlooked. This fifth element is accuracy, which is the proximity of the measured latitude and longitude to the actual location where the observation was made. The accuracy can be determined by a GPS device or manually by the user using a mapping app, such as the iNaturalist map function.

The importance of having observations with high accuracy cannot be overstated. Only a small number of uses of iNaturalist observations can accept observations with low accuracy. For example, obtaining a species list for Griffith Park, Balboa Park, or one of the ten counties in ...more ↓

Posted on August 03, 2014 03:54 PM by gregpauly gregpauly | 6 comments | Leave a comment
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Photos / Sounds

What

Southern Pacific Rattlesnake Crotalus oreganus ssp. helleri

Date

September 30, 2014

Place

(Somewhere...)

xantusiahunter Project curator ID

Crotalus oreganus ssp. helleri

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Southern Pacific Rattlesnake Crotalus oreganus ssp. helleri

Date

September 29, 2014

Place

(Somewhere...)

gregpauly Project curator ID

Crotalus oreganus ssp. helleri

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Southern Pacific Rattlesnake Crotalus oreganus ssp. helleri

Date

September 29, 2014

Place

(Somewhere...)

gregpauly Project curator ID

Crotalus oreganus ssp. helleri

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Gopher Snake Pituophis catenifer

Observer

tsvalle

Date

September 30, 2014 09:34 AM PDT

Description

Found during removal of a historic wall.

gregpauly Project curator ID

Pituophis catenifer

Photos / Sounds

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What

California Treefrog Pseudacris cadaverina

Observer

jaykeller

Date

May 31, 2014 11:29 AM PDT

Photos / Sounds

12625559735_ab91ff7755_s

What

Western Side-blotched Lizard Uta stansburiana ssp. elegans

Observer

jaykeller

Date

February 17, 2014 11:02 AM PST

gregpauly Project curator ID

Uta stansburiana ssp. elegans

Photos / Sounds

9303270839_87b7552958_s

What

Desert Iguana Dipsosaurus dorsalis

Observer

jaykeller

Date

June 2, 2013 10:14 AM PDT

gregpauly Project curator ID

Dipsosaurus dorsalis

Photos / Sounds

12625980424_47a4cd975a_s

What

Western Side-blotched Lizard Uta stansburiana ssp. elegans

Observer

jaykeller

Date

February 17, 2014 04:35 PM PST

gregpauly Project curator ID

Uta stansburiana ssp. elegans

Photos / Sounds

13392416424_85d00549a1_s

What

Western Side-blotched Lizard Uta stansburiana ssp. elegans

Observer

jaykeller

Date

March 23, 2014 12:28 PM PDT

gregpauly Project curator ID

Uta stansburiana ssp. elegans

Photos / Sounds

15393690205_d0afb9defa_s

What

Desert Banded Gecko Coleonyx variegatus ssp. variegatus

Observer

finatic

Date

September 26, 2014 11:03 PM PDT

Description

Imperial County, California, US

Photos / Sounds

15207107558_7cb09f456f_s

What

Couch's Spadefoot Scaphiopus couchii

Observer

finatic

Date

September 26, 2014 11:31 PM PDT

Place

(Somewhere...)

Description

Imperial County, California, US

gregpauly Project curator ID

Scaphiopus couchii

Photos / Sounds

15207016090_f9e7c0e5e6_s

What

Desert Banded Gecko Coleonyx variegatus ssp. variegatus

Observer

finatic

Date

September 27, 2014 12:35 AM PDT

Description

Imperial County, California, US

Photos / Sounds

What

Red Coachwhip Coluber flagellum ssp. piceus

Observer

finatic

Date

September 26, 2014 09:55 PM PDT

Description

Imperial County, California, US

gregpauly Project curator ID

Coluber flagellum ssp. piceus

Photos / Sounds

What

Couch's Spadefoot Scaphiopus couchii

Observer

finatic

Date

September 29, 2014 08:50 AM PDT

Place

(Somewhere...)

Description

Couch's Spadefoot Toad (Scaphiopus couchi)recorded in Algodones Dunes September 25, 2014 on a Droid phone.

gregpauly Project curator ID

Scaphiopus couchii

Photos / Sounds

15188227929_51e6716724_s

What

Western Banded Gecko Coleonyx variegatus

Observer

jaykeller

Date

September 26, 2014 11:04 PM PDT

gregpauly Project curator ID

Coleonyx variegatus

Photos / Sounds

What

Red Coachwhip Coluber flagellum ssp. piceus

Observer

jaykeller

Date

September 26, 2014 09:54 PM PDT

gregpauly Project curator ID

Coluber flagellum ssp. piceus

Photos / Sounds

What

Couch's Spadefoot Scaphiopus couchii

Observer

jaykeller

Date

September 26, 2014 11:32 PM PDT

Place

(Somewhere...)

gregpauly Project curator ID

Scaphiopus couchii

Photos / Sounds

What

Spiny Lizards Genus Sceloporus

Observer

rdm24

Date

March 22, 2008 03:51 PM PDT

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

California Treefrog Pseudacris cadaverina

Observer

nshirkey

Date

September 9, 2014

gregpauly Project curator ID

Pseudacris cadaverina

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Coastal Rosy Boa Lichanura orcutti

Observer

nshirkey

Date

May 20, 2012

gregpauly Project curator ID

Lichanura orcutti

Photos / Sounds

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What

Western Fence Lizard Sceloporus occidentalis

Observer

steviekgold

Date

September 27, 2014 11:21 AM PDT

Description

About 4 inches long, basking in the fallen leaves.

gregpauly Project curator ID

Sceloporus occidentalis

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Western Fence Lizard Sceloporus occidentalis

Observer

steviekgold

Date

September 27, 2014 10:27 AM PDT

Description

I believe these to be a male (the larger lizard in the foreground) and a female (the smaller one in the background). The male originally chased the female across the path before they stopped at this location and he began to do a push up display.

gregpauly Project curator ID

Sceloporus occidentalis

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Gopher Snake Pituophis catenifer

Observer

steviekgold

Date

September 27, 2014 10:51 AM PDT

Description

Found while hiking. It's tail was sticking out from the brush and it was very active and agitated once out from the bush. Approximately three an a half feet long.

gregpauly Project curator ID

Pituophis catenifer

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Western Fence Lizard Sceloporus occidentalis

Observer

steviekgold

Date

September 27, 2014 11:22 AM PDT

Description

Likely a juvenile, about three inches long, generously. Did not move at all as we approached.

gregpauly Project curator ID

Sceloporus occidentalis

Photos / Sounds

5529979566_1637b0cfec_s

What

Western Skink Plestiodon skiltonianus

Observer

rdm24

Date

March 6, 2011 12:50 PM PST

gregpauly Project curator ID

Plestiodon skiltonianus

Photos / Sounds

What

Western Rattlesnake Crotalus oreganus

Observer

rdm24

Date

July 3, 2010 11:07 AM PDT

gregpauly Project curator ID

Crotalus oreganus

Photos / Sounds

What

Northern Pacific Rattlesnake Crotalus oreganus ssp. oreganus

Observer

grifmeister

Date

September 26, 2014 11:08 AM PDT

gregpauly Project curator ID

Crotalus oreganus ssp. oreganus

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Coastal whiptail Aspidoscelis tigris ssp. stejnegeri

Observer

mickeylong

Date

May 31, 2013

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Coastal Whiptail (Aspidoscelis tigris ssp. stejnegeri) Aspidoscelis tigris ssp. stejnegeri

Observer

mickeylong

Date

May 12, 2011

Description

Poor shot but field marks visible; in Alluvial Scrub habitat.

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Southern Pacific Rattlesnake Crotalus oreganus ssp. helleri

Observer

glhans

Date

September 25, 2014 07:09 PM PDT

gregpauly Project curator ID

Crotalus oreganus ssp. helleri
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About

Reptiles and Amphibians of Southern California (RASCals)—The goal of this project is to improve our knowledge of native and non-native reptiles and amphibians in southern California.

The RASCals project is a partnership between the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, the San Diego Natural History Museum, the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area, and the La Kretz ...more ↓

17630-mini gregpauly created this project on June 08, 2013
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