logo Calflora Observation Hotline   HELP
The Observation Hotline application lets you search for georeferenced plant observations and see them on a map. It also show photos associated with observations.

To use the application, click on the map in an area of interest , zoom in, and press . If you want to qualify what observations are returned, enter some criteria, such as Plant Status = native.

Geographical Extent:

    in map area

to limit the search to the current map area.

Or, press DRAW A POLYGON to specify an exact geographical search space.
To find all records in a particular park, press Map Layers at the top of the page, choose Region / Protected Area (CPAD), and then click inside one of the parks or forests that appear on the map. The name of the selected area will appear on the left at the top of the map:
    36.2709, -121.8315         Andrew Molera State Park (CDPR)
Then check
    in selected area
(For more information about background layers, see Layer Help.)
The results appear simultaneously as points on the map and in a table below the map.
On the map,
    indicates a simple point;
    indicates a line or polygon; and
    indicates a quad (for certain plants in certain areas, only quad-level data is available).
If you click on a point on the map, an InfoWindow opens at the point, the table scrolls down to the corresponding record, and the record ID is highlighted. If you click on a record ID in the table, an InfoWindow opens at the corresponding map point, and a short menu opens up under the record ID.
    Press DETAIL in this menu to see a page showing full details of this record.

    For a point observation , press location-closeup to see a close up view of the record location in the Plant Distribution application, including any nearby observations of the same plant. For a shape observation , press shape-closeup to see a close up view of the record location including the shape (line or polygon).

This application can show at most 1500 observation simultaneously. If a particular search produces more, the application will only show the first 1500.

Column Sets: To show results in a table, the application comes with several predefined column sets, such as Basic Data and Weed Data. You can also make up a custom column set: choose custom, and then open customize.

Scientific Name: Typeahead enabled. Type the first few letters of the plant you are looking for, and then choose it from the list. Typeahead also works with Common Name.
    Note: When you specify a complete scientific name, such as Frangula californica ssp. tomentella, the search results will also include alternate names of that plant, if they are equivalent. So for instance, a search for Frangula californica ssp. tomentella will include records of Rhamnus tomentella.

    (To see exactly which plant names are included for any particular plant, go to the Taxon Report for the plant, and look at the list of Alternate Names in the Name Status section. See Name Status Help for an explanation of how Calflora tracks accepted and alternate names.)

    A plant name is referred to as a parent when the plant has subspecies or varieties, but they are not present in the name. So for instance, Frangula californica is a parent, because it has several subspecies. When you search for a parent name, all subspecies and varieties are included in the search results. Any alternate names of the parent are also included in the search results, as well as any alternate names of its subspecies and varieties.

Plant List: To limit your search to certain specific plants, choose a plant list. Look for already defined plant lists with the Plant List Definition application, or define your own.

Other Data Sources: By default, a search from this application will only consider records contributed directly to Calflora. Open OTHER SOURCES to include data from other sources including the Consortium of California Herbaria and iNaturalist.

County, Location, and Collection: To search on the basis of any of these three fields, open Tools and check Advanced Form.

Searching within a Background Polygon: There are many background map layers available. If you select one of the following layers, you can search within the selected background polygon:
    Protected Area (CPAD)
    Jepson Bioregion
    CNPS Chapter
    Zip Code
in selected area

Common Name
The common name of the plant observed.

Location Description
A brief description of where the plant is.

Observation Date
Date the plant was observed. Dates are kept in the database in the form YYYY-MM-DD; for example, 2012-12-31.

Name of the person(s) who observed the plant.

The organization(s) responsible for the record. This might include both the organization that paid for the survey and the organization that did the field work. The contributing organization is listed first. For instance

    SFPUC; Nomad Ecology

This field is used by contributors to categorize their records.



2014 June Map Layers has a new look: open Climate to find a particular climate layer, such as Warm Months. Open Region to find a a region layer, such as Watershed.