Pride Month 2021 Wrap Up

We're wrapping up Pride Month and wanted to share the stories of two more members of the iNat community who identify as LGBTQIA+, similar to our blog post on June 1st. We hope that other members of our community can feel seen, heard, and realize that they're not alone.

We want to thank everyone in the community making it a welcoming place and for sharing and listening here, on the forum, and at the amazing virtual mixer run by Dr. Lauren Esposito from 500 Queer Scientists!

Comments are closed for this blog post, but feel free to continue respectfully sharing your thoughts and experiences in this thread on the iNaturalist Community Forum.

Diego Almendras (@diegoalmendras)

Pronouns: he/him

Understanding how diverse is nature help me to realize how diverse we are, thus, I never felt bad for being homosexual.

I grew up in the coast in Central Chile and, as a child, I spent my free time in an infinite rocky intertidal, hearing the power of the sea, surrounded by weird animals, it really opened my mind. I mean, there is nothing more queer than a fierce and flamboyant colorful sea slug?

Now, I can name these rare mollusks, crustaceans, fish, and egg cases using iNaturalist. And sometimes, with my partner, we spend a lot of time outside, recording everything which call our attention to this platform. This community has piqued his curiosity about the natural world, our world. Sadly, he refuses to open an account but that's okay, as long as he point out interesting things to me that I've overlooked.

I consider myself lucky to have been born in a warm and progressive family, which is always by my side for my next challenge. They have probably gone through the same path with me - sure, having a gay brother must be complicated at some social point, but being gay is fine, it's not bad at all. There is more and more research and findings of homosexual unions in the animal world, powerful unions that allow success in raising the next generation in gregarious animals. Nature never ceases to amaze me, and I was born to learn more about it.

And definitively I stay here on iNaturalist, because it is a place where there is no hate and spam, thank the universe!

Felix Flax (@feralbeetle)

Pronouns: he/him

I'm a twenty year old transgender man and discovering iNaturalist really helped me when I was moving to university in 2019 - I started attending university in a different country than the one I grew up in so I knew absolutely nobody, and using iNaturalist gave me a reason to leave my dorm room, which cheered me up because I had something to do and I noticed all the different fauna that I didn't have back home. Making friends was difficult for me, especially since my new university didn't have a large number of out trans people like my high school had. By being outside I interacted with people more often on campus, and over time those chance encounters led to friendships. iNaturalist was a discovery I made long after my queerness, yet in many ways both are equally big parts of my life now.

Posted by tiwane tiwane, June 30, 2021 11:28 PM