Location, Location, Location

Mountains provide many habitats for plants and animals with windy ridgelines and protected valleys, varying sun exposures with aspect, and of course elevational changes. Accurate location information, which encapsulates the spatial variability, is super helpful to researchers like us here at AMC studying mountain plant phenology. However, we recognize that images coming into iNaturalist vary in the source and accuracy of their associated location data. There are ways to help capture the best location data possible that we thought we would share.

Using the iNaturalist mobile app to take your photos of plants and animals you encounter on or near the AT is the best way to get good location information. The app will access your mobile devices GPS even when you are not within range of cell service. I have notice that it may take a few minutes for the app to get an accurate location reading so I go in and out of the location field (see #5 in the image below) a few times before I share/upload my observation. I don't edit or move the location but simple re-save the location allowing the app time to sync with satellites. Under the location title you can see the "Acc:" value go down as the app updates with the satellite information. There may be times, in the mountains especially, where this accuracy value does not improve and remains fairly high. That is no reason not to submit an observation as researchers can decide later if it meets their location accuracy needs.

If you use a digital camera and a GPS review the iNaturalist instructions for geotagging images at this link: https://www.inaturalist.org/pages/video+tutorials#geotag while this method likely provides fairly accurate location information only the lat and long data transfer and the accuracy of the location data is not provided.

If you add an image using a computer and web browser you can see how to add or edit your location information, including adding accuracy information in this video https://www.inaturalist.org/pages/video+tutorials#add_mob at about 1:14 minutes.

Posted by gmurray gmurray, July 06, 2018 17:51

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This is a good project! Recently you added a photo of Canada Mayflower that I posted, taken fairly near my home in Shrewsbury, Vt.. The location is not within the AT corridor. I’m just not sure how close to the trail you want your images to be, so I’m just letting you know.

Posted by pamdarrow 10 months ago (Flag)

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