Nova Scotia Wild Flora's Journal

April 15, 2021

An invitation to participate in the 2021 City Nature Challenge

Hi Everyone!
This post is to let you all know that 3 areas in Nova Scotia are registered to participate in the 2021 City Nature Challenge (CNC). This international citizen science event started in 2016 and has been a great success in highlighting biodiversity around the world and in engaging local participation.

This year's 4 day 'bioblitz' runs from April 30th to May 3rd (Friday to Monday). Observations may be recorded starting one second after midnight on day one up until one second before midnight on the last day.

This year 23 cities/areas from across Canada are participating. Click here to find an area near you. Note that there are 7 areas in the Maritimes participating. The 3 Nova Scotian entries are CBRM, The Annapolis Valley (Kings and Annapolis Counties), and HRM including Sable Island.

Our objectives in setting up the local CNC events are simple – we want everyone to get outdoors, to explore, to observe nature, to share observations using iNaturalist, and to have fun!

To participate all that you have to do is download the free iNat app or go to and JOIN. Start recording observations today! Get prepared for the start of the CNC on April 30th! Help spread the word!

The global CNC iNat project will display a leader board once the event commences in April - it will be dynamic and will shuffle the order of the cities based on who has made the most observations.

The global CNC will announce results on May 9th, so try to get all your observations uploaded by then! Also, the more observations we can get identified down to species by then, the higher our species number will be!

The identification of observations down to species level is often difficult when the only evidence is a photo. In this iNat project we plan to provide a few journal posts to help the observer take better photos of wild plants. Hopefully the inclusion of multiple views will facilitate identification!

Local CNC organizers and keen iNatters have been brainstorming about places to explore and species to search for during this year's event. Future posts will describe a few data quests. If you or your organization have suggestions please leave a comment below.

Please feel free to brainstorm other ideas, ask questions, etc. in the comments – and definitely add others to this journal post via tagging them in the comments!

Posted on April 15, 2021 19:32 by mkkennedy mkkennedy | 0 comments | Leave a comment

April 07, 2021

NSWFS Field Trip Report: Digby Neck area. Sat. April 3, 2021

The April field trip was to a Digby Neck bog near East Ferry. It was led by Jeff White and attended by Charles Cron, Joe Johnson, Jim Jotcham and Bob Kennedy. (iNat memberIDs: jeffwhite: bobkennedy)

The swamp starting from the side of the road right to the bog was full of skunk cabbage spathes just opening up to reveal the blooms inside. In the surrounding forest we saw a variety of lichens, including the rare Blue Felt Lichen (Pectenia plumbea) and more common Black Bordered Shingle Lichen (Parmeliella triptophylla) and Yellow Specklebelly Lichen (Pseudocyphellaria holarctica). The bog itself was largely dormant except for some evergreen leaves of Inkberry (Ilex glabra), a few mosses and very occasionally in sphagnum depressions, the minute spirals of Curly Grass Fern (Schizaea pusilla). While it was hard to see the brown sporangia amongst the dead leaves, the green curls of this tiny fern were easier to find than at other times of year.

Species of interest from this trip included the following:
Eastern Skunk Cabbage (Symplocarpus foetidus), taxon_id=48961
Blue Felt Lichen (Pectenia plumbea), taxon_id=823668
Black Bordered Shingle Lichen (Parmeliella triptophylla), taxon_id=227227
Yellow Specklebelly Lichen (Pseudocyphellaria holarctica), taxon_id=700478
Inkberry (Ilex glabra), taxon_id=129347
Curly Grass Fern (Schizaea pusilla), taxon_id=168606
NOTE: the taxon_id number is the iNaturalist code number for the species.

Click here to view observations posted from this field trip. More photos may trickle in over time.

Click here to view observations of these species found in the past in the Digby area. Click on ‘observations’ to browse individual observations.

Posted on April 07, 2021 19:38 by mkkennedy mkkennedy | 0 comments | Leave a comment

iNat FAQ: Can I pin a location that I visit over and over again?

In the tutorial on how to upload observations using the web there were directions on how to pin locations.
These locations are associated with individual memberIDs and are not accessible to others so if a group of members all wish to replicate location info they will have to collaborate!

If on the other hand the objective is to define locations that are frequently visited by an individual iNatter simply assign a good name to be associated with a specific point with appropriate accuracy circle in metres.
When uploading the observation select the pinned name and then, if required, move the point around the map until at the location where the observation was made.

Species of conservation concern will automatically have the true coordinates (latitude and longitude) associated with an observation 'obscured'.

Posted on April 07, 2021 10:39 by mkkennedy mkkennedy | 0 comments | Leave a comment

iNat Tutorials : How to upload observations

Under the iNat HELP section there are a number of very useful tutorials.

Two of these tutorials describe how to add one observation or a batch of up to 50 observations.
-->To learn how to upload observations on a mobile device Click here.
-->To learn how to upload observations via the web Click here.

Check out another video describing how to duplicate an observation - perhaps your photo includes two species that can't or shouldn't be separated as they highlight interactions- examples could be a bee on a flower or a snail chewing on a plant. Other examples include galls and leaf miners.

Posted on April 07, 2021 10:01 by mkkennedy mkkennedy | 0 comments | Leave a comment

Intro to iNaturalist Canada - Who/What is it?

The following points were extracted directly from the iNat web pages (

iNaturalist is an online social network of people sharing biodiversity information to help each other learn about nature.

The primary goal in operating iNaturalist is to connect people to nature, and by that they mean getting people to feel that the non-human world has personal significance, and is worth protecting.
The secondary goal is to generate scientifically valuable biodiversity data from these personal encounters.

iNaturalist Canada is led by the Canadian Wildlife Federation (CWF) along with Parks Canada, NatureServe Canada and the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM), which collectively make up the iNaturalist Canada Steering Committee. The platform is managed by the steering committee in collaboration with which is a joint initiative of the California Academy of Sciences and the National Geographic Society.

Anyone with a computer or smartphone with Internet can use iNat to: keep track of your own observations, w/ maps, calendars, journals, life lists, etc.; get help from the community in identifying what you observed

Posted on April 07, 2021 09:40 by mkkennedy mkkennedy | 0 comments | Leave a comment