CalPhotos: About Identifications   

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Accuracy of Identifications

CalPhotos cannot guarantee the accuracy of the identifications of the plants and animals in this collection of photos. Many of these photos have been contributed by amateur naturalists and nature enthusiasts who were not trained as scientists. Occasionally we discover that the plant or animal in a photo has been incorrectly identified by the photographer. Identifications at the genus level are fairly reliable for this database, but mistakes do occur. Because of the size of the CalPhotos database, all new photos are handled by computer programs, so there is no human review to make sure the subject in the photo matches the scientific provided by the photographer.

Correction Policy

Our policy is to accept the photographer's scientific name, but provide a mechanism for experts to review photos and correct identifications. Scientists with expertise in a particular area of natural history can register with CalPhotos to review photos. There is a list of CalPhotos reviewers here. Reviewers can comment on a photo, or change the scientific name. We notify the photographer and/or contributing organization of any changes that are made to the information they supplied originally. In the case of a disagreement about the name, our policy is to accept the photographer's name. A typical reason for disagreement is when a local organization uses taxonomy that is not nationally recognized. In this case, the photographer retains the local name on his/her photo. The detail page for any photo that has had a name change contains a history of the changes, including the reviewers' names, dates, and reasons for change.

For more information about this annotation system, please see CalPhotos: annotations and corrections.

CalPhotos is a project of BNHM   University of California, Berkeley

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this page last updated: Jun 5, 2024