How To Identify Any Species in Your Backyard With Nothing But Your Phone!

published on July 9, 2020

So cool okay you little cute babymonster go off it be the killer that youwere meant to be hey smart people Joehere no I'm not losing my marbles I'mactually doing a science specificallythat's me being an amateur naturalist

Someone who studies the patterns andrelationships between different speciesin nature it's something super fun andeducational that anyone can do no matterhow old you are or where you live nowwhether you live in the woods or the

Suburbs or in the middle of the concretejungle or if you never leave home at allnature is all around you even if itdoesn't seem like it it will blow yourmind to know how much wildlife is rightthere at your fingertips

All you need is a smartphone with acamera and some curiositytoday I'm gonna show you how you cancontribute to actual scientific researchwithout even leaving your backyard andhow much fun it can be yes what you

Observe can help scientists with theirresearch right now because scientistscan't be everywhere at oncebut together we can be in a lot ofdifferent places it's a way thateveryone can be a naturalist and observe

The world around us and how it'schanging here's how it works youdownload this app I naturalistit's a joint initiative by theCalifornia Academy of Sciences and theNational Geographic Society that lets

People like you and meobserve identify and record the plantsanimals and fungi we see then share themwith a worldwide social network theyaren't sponsoring this video in any wayI just really love this app and I think

You will tooit's totally free it's a great thing todo at home and it's fun and this isbasically poking Mongo only thecreatures are real and instead ofcapturing them in little red and white

Balls you just take a picture of themand share them with the world when yousee something interesting just snap aphoto and upload it to i natural istsBAM I just did science the app willanalyze the photo compare it to other

Observations and give you potential IDsfor what you found the AI says I foundan orange sulfur butterfly and thatlooks like a perfect match to my photo Imean this is nuts that a machine I canhold in my hand can identify a plant or

An animal just from a photo I naturalistdoes this using computer vision amachine learning algorithm trained witha database of more than 10 millionphotos all with confirmed IDs analyzesyour photo to look for a visual match

And give you a suggested ID and since alot of species look really similar italso factors in things like yourlocation – and of course all goodscience is about verification so thatphoto gets shared to a community

Worldwide of naturalist – theprofessional scientists to verify the IDand make corrections if nestsand once the ID is verified it getsadded to a global database wherescientists can get access to the time

The location and the ID for millions ofobservations around the world fromcitizen scientists like you and me nowyou really want to look for wild thingsso maybe not the grass in your yard orthat potted plant you bought at the

Store but even cultivated plants theplants that we plant can attractwildlife so turning over leaves andlooking into flowers is a great place tostart I'm lucky you live in a place thathas just so many awesome wildflowers

Like new bonnets and sysdate for Texashere's a cone flower that's coming up Ithink that's what that is I think it's Ithink it's called a Primrose we'll findout something I guess having breakfastin there love these one of my favorite

Parts of spring hello hello fuzzy friendare you all you need a little luck and alittle patiencegot it yeah and even things that don'tseem very interesting can be superimportant to scientists take this Rollie

Pollie or potato bug or wood lousewhatever you call them a lot of speciesthat look like thisthey might look the same to you or mebut an AI naturalist user once spottedone that hadn't been seen in ninety

Years you can look around yourneighborhood to just no trespassing okayplaces where there's a lot of plantsattract a lot of animals like this areahere in my garden look up down allaround you never know what you're gonna

Find all right here's a patch that's aperfect example it looks like there'sjust maybe I don't know four or fiveplants here but if you look closer youcan find a lot more so let's dig in andsee what else is in here all kinds of

Weird beetle e things eaten this plant Igot this little clip on macro lens formy phone and you don't need that I justlove getting that up close and personallook at our little bug friends sometimeswhen you look you won't find anything

New and that's okay but you can boostyour chances of finding cool critters Iset up a couple of really easy traps inmy yard and with an old sheet ofcardboard you can make a cover board aperfect place for dark loving critters

To hide make sure you lift stuff up sothat whatever's underneath can move awayfrom you if you find like an awesomesnake or something you don't want it'sonly escape route to be in yourdirection same goes for lifting up rocks

You can find a bunch of cool stuff underthere but you know put it back whenyou're done but somebody's home you'remessing with and there's nothing therehey guys you think we could like addsome CGI bugs or something here's a

Little pit trap I made just by burying apaper cup in the ground so that anythingthat walks by well you know falls intomy pit it's bare I mean scientificresearch station yeah nothing in thereright now

Don't have a yard no problem lift upyour flowerpots your doormat whateveryou can findthere could be critters under there youdon't even have to leave home to do itthere's a hole I naturalist project for

Our uninvited houseguestsand don't forget trees I mean sure theydon't move but that makes them easy totake pictures of tree tree there'sanother tree oh look another treeanother tree we miss trees got a little

Vining friendhello vine you friend here's anothertree I think this tree might be invasivebad tree you'll start to learn how tolook out for other clues too likefootprints or insect eggs those little

Galls on the bottom of leaves you'regonna be a nature detective before youknow it ooh here we got some fire antsanother invasive species very spicy donot touch and this probably goes withoutsaying but just in case if you don't

Know what it is and even if you do notouchyokay that's an itchy just think what youcould find if you did this once a weekor every day one I naturalist user inMexico tracked the species in his yard

Over a few years and he ID'd more than500 different organisms right at homethis kind of citizen science can make areal differenceit's a massive data set more than anyscientist could get on their own and

It's at higher resolution that anysatellite or tracking tag could givethem thanks to all of our eyes workingtogether will helping track threatenedand endangered species so we know wherethey need to be protected

We're tracking invasive species so weknow where they need to be controlledwe're seeing how wildlife is adapting toa changing climate and best of all it'sjust a good way to get better connectedwith where you live over 25 million

Wildlife observations have been uploadedto AI natural as so far and just lastyear's citizen scientists recorded30,000 species which led to more than200 new scientific papers they've evenled to some awesome discoveries even if

You can't go to some place that feelswild well you don't have to becausenature is everywhere it's all around youyou just have to go look for it we'veset up a special project on I naturalistthat you can join just go search it's

Okay to be smart global survey and the inatural aspra jectsjoin up and all of your observationswill be part of our community you canbeat me well you better get startedstay curious hey guys I'm filming this

At home during The Cove in nineteenpandemic and if you're watching thisfrom the future let me just say I hopethings have gotten better by then but ifyou're watching this now please staysafe if you go out and check out nature

Where you live pay attention to localstay-at-home orders physical distancingall that just stay safe nature will bethere when this is all done and ifyou've got younger kids you want to trythis with or if you are a younger kid I

Naturalist also has a cool app calledseek it's a little bit more like a gameas different features it's fun in awhole different way finally I want tosay a huge thank you to everyone whosupports the show on patreon we could

Not make these episodes without yoursupport if you'd like to join ourcommunity just check out the link downin the description got a bunch of greatperks and you'll help us bring you moreepisodes like this and different from

This we'll see you next time I'm gonnalook for some bugs don't sting me got itsee the sweat all over my face nocomplaining back to natureI don't think golfers tent oh my got itseriously 5000 degrees out here

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