logo Calflora My Observations   HELP
Updated August 23, 2022
The My Observations application lets you search for plant observations owned by you, and see them on a map. It also show photos associated with your observations.

When the application first comes up, it will show your most recent 50 observations.

If you only want to see your observations from a certain area, click on the map in an area of interest , zoom in, check in map area, and press . You can also qualify what observations are returned by entering other search parameters, such as

    Native Status = "native".

For help using this application, please contact Calflora support.
The results appear simultaneously as points on the map and in a table below the map. In the table, unpublished records are labeled as such. On the map,
    Indicates a simple point.
    Indicates an obscured point.
    Indicates a survey.
    Indicates a line or polygon.
    Indicates a record with Number of Plants equal to 0.
    Indicates a flagged or questionable record.

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 is highlighted. If you click on the purple crayon next to a record in the table, an InfoWindow opens at the corresponding map point, and a short menu opens up under the crayon.

detail Open the detail page for this record, including all photos and any comments that may have been made by other users on this record.

editor Open Plant Observation Entry on this record.

location-closeup (if the record is published and has an identifiable plant name): Open the Plant Distribution application showing a close up view of the record location. It will show the polygon associated with this record, if there is one, and any nearby observations of the same plant.

publish (if the record is unpublished); Publish the record. Note that "published" here simply means that the record is viewable by any Calflora user.

delete Open a dialog to ask if you are sure. If you are, delete the record.

+iNatPhoto Change the server location of the iNaturalist photo. Only do this if the photo is not showing. See iNaturalist Photos.

This application can show at most 2000 observations simultaneously. The default value of Max Results is 50.

Choosing Which Columns to Display
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. Open customize and choose the columns you want. See this Data Dictionary for an explanation of all available columns.

When results first appear, they are in Index Date order, with the records you have added to Calflora most recently on top. Click on a column title to sort by that column.

In the default column set, a Photo column is included. For observations that have photos, this column is filled with the first photo from each observation. Click on the photo to view the Observation Detail page for the record.

If the observation has more than one photo, then a white number appears in the upper left of the photo indicating how many additional photos are part of this observation:

Search Criteria

Start Date and End Date:
Dates are entered in the format YYYY-MM-DD so that February 20, 2019 is written as 2019-2-20. Dates are inclusive: If you enter 2017-2-20 as the end date, the result will include records that were entered on or before 2017-2-20. If you put the same date in both Start Date and End Date, the results will only include records entered on that date.

Access by Others:
published - records that are visible to all Calflora users
obscured - records that are visible to other users in an obscured location

Location Quality: (See On Location Quality)
high or medium

records with photos
records with photo likes

show original coordinates: If you have obscured the locations of some of your records, check this to see the records at their original unobscured locations.

only surveys: Check this to limit results to only surveys and checklists.


For additional criteria, open More Criteria.

Date added to Calflora

This field may be helpful if you have uploaded records to Calflora with the Observation Upload application. Enter a batch value such as wb1020; this will match all record numbers that begin with wb1020.

records with comments: Check this to see only those of your records which have comments. Press detail to read the comments.

iNaturalist records: Check this to include those of your records which came from iNaturalist.

flagged records: Check this to see only those of your records which have been flagged as questionable.

Here is a short description of how a record might be flagged as questionable. Suppose another Calflora user puts a comment on your published record, questioning the plant identification. You will be notified of this comment by email and by a notification (upper right of the page) whenever you use Calflora.

When this happens, go to the Observation Detail page for the record and read the comments. If you agree with suggestions in the comments, edit the record, and make any changes. Whether you agree or not, acknowledge the comment on the Observation Detail page by checking Mark this comment as resolved.

If you have not acknowledged the comment after seven days, your record will be automatically flagged as questionable. Flagged records do not appear in public search results.

To get rid of the questionable flag, simply edit the record and save it.


    Choose a format, and press . The current results will be downloaded with all columns that are currently showing.

Batch Edit
The Batch Editor is a feature of this application which can make changes to many of your records at the same time. It is a powerful and potentially dangerous tool.

Using the editor is a two step process. First, you use the criteria on the left hand side of the page to search for matching records. Then you open the editor, and specify a change to one or more fields.

For safety, the editor will not work on all of your records. You must specify at least one search criteria on the left side of the page before using the editor.

To open the editor, enter some search criteria, press , and then open TOOLS and press .

In the editor panel, you can specify changes to the records that match your search. Once you have entered the changes you want to make, press . This action will ask you to confirm, and then apply the changes to all of the records that match your search, even if you cannot see them in the result table.

For instance, to publish all matching records, set Access by other users to published. To obscure all matching records, set Access by other users to obscured.

To associate all matching records with one of your groups, select the group from the Group Association drop down (bottom left). Press to make the changes happen.

You can also delete all matching records. First, search for the records you want to delete, and then press . This action will ask you to confirm, and then delete all of the matching records.

Note that changes made by the Editor are not recoverable.



iNaturalist Photos
When you bring in a record from iNaturalist, the photo is stored on one of these two servers:
Sometimes iNaturalist will move the original photo from the first server to the second server. If you added an iNaturalist record to Calflora when the photo was stored on the first server, and then sometime after that the photo was moved to the second server, the photo will no longer appear on Calflora pages. Instead you will see something like this in the space where the photo belongs:
To fix this problem, click on the purple crayon next to the record in the table. In the menu, click +iNatPhoto. The URL of the photo will be updated on Calflora, and you should see the photo immediately.

More Information
See also the Contributing Plant Observations FAQ

For more information about background layers, see Layer Help.

If you are a member of any groups, you can use the Group drop down to select records from just one of your groups.

For more about the other fields, see Plant Observation Entry Help

Release Notes

2021 May v 2.99   There is a PHOTO ESSAY function in the Tools menu.

2021 February v 2.97   There is a DOWNLOAD RESULTS function in the Tools menu.

2020 December v 2.95   SYMBOLOGY has been renamed LEGEND. To see the current legend, or to change legend themes, open LEGEND in the top left corner of the map.

2020 November v 2.93   Use the flagged records criterion in More Criteria to find which of your records have been flagged as questionable.

2020 May v 2.84   A white number appears in the upper left of the photo indicating how many additional photos are part of the observation.
The Advanced checkbox in the TOOLS menu has been replaced by More Criteria.

2020 April v 2.83 Click on the purple crayon to select a record in the table instead of clicking on the ID.

2020 April v 2.79 The resize thumb -- a control to change the height of the map-- is back! Find it in the lower left corner of the map.

2019 October v 2.68 Use the Batch Editor to obscure (or un-obscure) many records at once.

2019 October v 2.64 Added support for obscured records -- you can search for them, and you can show them at their original locations.

2019 August v 2.55 Added Symbology to the TOOLS manu. Use this feature to see lines and polygons on the map.

2019 March v 2.46 The coordinates of the map cursor and the name of the current background layer polygon, if any, are now displayed above the map.

2018 November v 2.39 In the table of results, all columns are sortable. Click once to sort in ascending order (green); click again to sort in descending order (orange).

The column headers are pinned to the top of the page when you scroll down.

2018 October v.2.35

2017 May v.2.14 If you select Photo = "records with photo likes", you will see all of your published records which some Calflora user has "liked". To see the exact count of likes, click on the ID, and then click DETAIL to see the Observation Detail page for the record.

Also, a Large Photo column is now available. Open customize, and scroll down to select the Large Photo column.