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Data Paper (Biosciences)
"Flora of Russia" on iNaturalist: a dataset
expand article infoAlexey P. Seregin, Dmitriy A. Bochkov, Julia V. Shner, Eduard V. Garin§, Igor N. Pospelov|, Vadim E. Prokhorov, Pavel V. Golyakov#, Sergey R. Mayorov, Sergey A. Svirin¤, Alexander N. Khimin«, Marina S. Gorbunova», Ekaterina S. Kashirina˄,¤, Olga P. Kuryakova˅, Boris V. Bolshakov¦, Aleksandr L. Ebelˀ, Anatoliy A. Khapuginˁ,, Maxim M. Mallaliev, Sergey V. Mirvoda, Sergey A. Lednev, Dina V. Nesterkova, Nadezhda P. Zelenova, Svetlana A. Nesterova, Viktoriya N. Zelenkova, Georgy M. Vinogradov, Olga V. Biryukova, Alla V. Verkhozina, Alexey P. Zyrianov, Sergey V. Gerasimov, Ramazan A. Murtazalievℓ,, Yurii M. Basov, Kira Yu. Marchenkova‡‡, Dmitry R. Vladimirov§§, Dina B. Safina||, Sergey V. Dudov, Nikolai I. Degtyarev¶¶, Diana V. Tretyakova##, Daba G. Chimitov¤¤, Evgenij A. Sklyar««, Alesya N. Kandaurova»», Svetlana A. Bogdanovich˄˄, Alexander V. Dubynin˅˅,¦¦, Olga A. Chernyaginaˀˀ,ˁˁ, Aleksandr V. Lebedev₵₵, Mikhail S. Knyazevℓℓ, Irina Yu. Mitjushina₰₰, Nina V. Filippova₱₱, Kseniia V. Dudova, Igor V. Kuzmin, Tatyana Yu. Svetasheva₳₳, Vladimir P. Zakharov₴₴, Vladimir P. Travkin₣₣, Yaroslav O. Magazov₮₮, Vladimir Yu. Teploukhov₦₦, Andrey N. Efremov₭₭, Olesya V. Deineko««, Viktor V. Stepanov₲₲, Eugene S. Popov‽‽, Dmitry V. Kuzmenckin#, Tatiana L. Strus₩₩, Tatyana V. Zarubo₸₸, Konstantin V. Romanov, Alexei L. Ebel‡‡‡, Denis V. Tishin, Vladimir Yu. Arkhipov§§§, Vladimir N. Korotkov|||, Svetlana B. Kutueva¶¶¶, Vladimir V. Gostev₵₵, Mikhail M. Krivosheev###, Natalia S. Gamova‡,¤¤¤, Veronica A. Belova«««, Oleg E. Kosterin»»»,¦¦, Sergey V. Prokopenko˄˄˄, Rinat R. Sultanov, Irina A. Kobuzeva˅˅˅, Nikolay V. Dorofeev, Alexander A. Yakovlev¦¦¦, Yuriy V. Danilevskyˀˀˀ, Irina B. Zolotukhina¶¶, Damir A. Yumagulovˁˁˁ, Valerii A. Glazunov₵₵₵, Vladimir A. Bakutovℓℓℓ, Andrey V. Danilin₰₰₰, Igor V. Pavlov₱₱₱, Elena S. Pushay₳₳₳, Elena V. Tikhonova₴₴₴, Konstantin V. Samodurov₣₣₣, Dmitrii V. Epikhin₮₮₮, Tatyana B. Silaeva₦₦₦, Andrei I. Pyak₭₭₭,ˀ, Yulia A. Fedorova₲₲₲, Evgeniy S. Samarin‽‽‽, Denis S. Shilov₩₩₩, Valentina P. Borodulina, Ekaterina V. Kropocheva₸₸₸, Gennadiy L. Kosenkov‡‡‡‡, Uladzimir V. Bury¦, Anna E. Mitroshenkova§§§§, Tatiana A. Karpenko||, Ruslan M. Osmanov, Maria V. Kozlova||||, Tatiana M. Gavrilova, Stepan A. Senator¶¶¶¶,####, Maxim I. Khomutovskiy‡,¶¶¶¶, Eugene A. Borovichev¤¤¤¤, Ilya V. Filippov₱₱, Serguei V. Ponomarenko««««, Elena A. Shumikhina, Dmitry F. Lyskov, Evgeny A. Belyakov§, Mikhail N. Kozhin‡,»»»», Leonid S. Poryadin, Artem V. Leostrin‽‽
‡ Lomonosov Moscow State University, Moscow, Russia
§ Papanin Institute for Biology of Inland Waters, RAS, Borok, Yaroslavl Oblast, Russia
| Severtsov Institute of Ecology and Evolution, RAS, Moscow, Russia
¶ Kazan Federal University, Kazan, Russia
# Tigirek State Reserve, Barnaul, Russia
¤ Sevastopol State University, Sevastopol, Russia
« Pavlovsk Secondary School #2, Pavlovsk, Voronezh Oblast, Russia
» Independent Researcher, Korolyov, Moscow Oblast, Russia
˄ Lomonosov Moscow State University (Sevastopol Branch), Sevastopol, Russia
˅ Independent Researcher, Milkovo, Kamchatsky Krai, Russia
¦ Independent Researcher, Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia
ˀ Tomsk State University, Tomsk, Russia
ˁ Joint Directorate of the Mordovia State Nature Reserve and National Park “Smolny”, Saransk, Russia
₵ Tyumen State University, Tyumen, Russia
ℓ Mountain Botanical Garden, Dagestan Federal Research Centre, RAS, Makhachkala, Russia
₰ Belorechenskoye Agricultural Public Joint Stock Company, Belorechensky, Irkutsk Oblast, Russia
₱ Institute of Plant and Animal Ecology, Ural Branch, RAS, Ekaterinburg, Russia
₳ Independent Researcher, Kaliningrad, Russia
₴ Independent Researcher, Kostroma, Russia
₣ Belgorod National Research University, Belgorod, Russia
₮ Shirshov Institute of Oceanology, RAS, Moscow, Russia
₦ Lobachevsky State University, Nizhny Novgorod, Russia
₭ Siberian Institute of Plant Physiology and Biochemistry, SB RAS, Irkutsk, Russia
₲ Independent Researcher, Novosibirsk, Russia
‽ Republican Children’s Ecological and Biological Center of Bashkortostan, Ufa, Russia
₩ Dagestan State Medical University, Makhachkala, Russia
₸ Independent Researcher, Tyumen, Russia
‡‡ Independent Researcher, Bryansk, Russia
§§ Voronezh State University, Voronezh, Russia
|| Independent Researcher, Sevastopol, Russia
¶¶ Central Chernozem Reserve, Kursk Oblast, Russia
## Togliatti State University, Togliatti, Russia
¤¤ Institute of General and Experimental Biology, RAS, Ulan-Ude, Russia
«« Independent Researcher, Kursk, Russia
»» Independent Researcher, Saratov, Russia
˄˄ Independent Researcher, Alushta, Russia
˅˅ Open Laboratory of Conservation Biology, Novosibirsk, Russia
¦¦ Novosibirsk State University, Novosibirsk, Russia
ˀˀ Vitus Bering Kamchatka State University, Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia
ˁˁ Kamchatka Branch of the Pacific Geographical Institute, FEB RAS, Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia
₵₵ Russian State Agrarian University - Moscow Timiryazev Agricultural Academy, Moscow, Russia
ℓℓ Institute Botanic Garden, Ural Branch, RAS, Ekaterinburg, Russia
₰₰ Directorate of Protected Areas, Vladimir, Russia
₱₱ Yugra State University, Khanty-Mansiysk, Russia
₳₳ Tula State Lev Tolstoy Pedagogical University, Tula, Russia
₴₴ Independent Researcher, Likino-Dulyovo, Moscow Oblast, Russia
₣₣ Independent Researcher, Samara, Russia
₮₮ Chelyabinsk Children and Youth Camping Trip Centre "Kosmos", Chelyabinsk, Russia
₦₦ Independent Researcher, Omsk, Russia
₭₭ Ulyanovsk State Pedagogical University, Ulyanovsk, Russia
₲₲ Independent Researcher, Vladimir, Russia
‽‽ Komarov Botanical Institute, RAS, Saint Petersburg, Russia
₩₩ Independent Researcher, Khanty-Mansiysk, Russia
₸₸ Independent Researcher, Nizhny Novgorod, Russia
‡‡‡ Altai State University, Barnaul, Russia
§§§ Institute of Theoretical and Experimental Biophysics, RAS, Pushchino, Russia
||| Izrael Institute of Global Climate and Ecology, Moscow, Russia
¶¶¶ Rybinsk State Historical, Architectural and Art Museum Preserve, Rybinsk, Yaroslavl Oblast, Russia
### Bashkir State University, Ufa, Russia
¤¤¤ Baikalsky State Nature Biosphere Reserve, Tankhoy, Buryat Republic, Russia
««« Irkutsk State University, Irkutsk, Russia
»»» Institute of Cytology and Genetics, SB RAS, Novosibirsk, Russia
˄˄˄ Federal Scientific Center of the East Asia Terrestrial Biodiversity, FEB RAS, Vladivostok, Russia
˅˅˅ Independent Researcher, Moscow, Russia
¦¦¦ Independent Researcher, Cheboksary, Russia
ˀˀˀ Independent Researcher, Ust-Labinsk, Krasnodar Krai, Russia
ˁˁˁ Independent Researcher, Ufa, Russia
₵₵₵ Institute of the Problems of Northern Development, Tyumen Scientific Centre SB RAS, Tyumen, Russia
ℓℓℓ Independent Researcher, Volzhsk, Mari El Republic, Russia
₰₰₰ NUST MISIS, Moscow, Russia
₱₱₱ Independent Researcher, Perm Krai, Russia
₳₳₳ Tver State University, Tver, Russia
₴₴₴ Center for Forest Ecology and Productivity, RAS, Moscow, Russia
₣₣₣ Independent Researcher, Asino, Tomsk Oblast, Russia
₮₮₮ Vernadsky Crimean Federal University, Simferopol, Russia
₦₦₦ Ogarev Mordovia State University, Saransk, Russia
₭₭₭ Tuva State University, Kyzyl, Russia
₲₲₲ Institute of Biology, Ufa Federal Research Centre, RAS, Ufa, Russia
‽‽‽ Independent Researcher, Neftekamsk, Russia
₩₩₩ Visim State Natural Biosphere Reserve, Pervouralsk, Sverdlovsk Oblast, Russia
₸₸₸ Institute of Molecular Genetics, National Research Centre «Kurchatov Institute», Moscow, Russia
‡‡‡‡ Sebezhsky Museum of Local Lore, Sebezh, Pskov Oblast, Russia
§§§§ Samara State University of Social Sciences and Education, Samara, Russia
|||| Zubov State Oceanographic Institute, Moscow, Russia
¶¶¶¶ Tsitsin Main Botanical Garden, RAS, Moscow, Russia
#### Institute of Ecology of the Volga River Basin, Samara Federal Research Center, RAS, Togliatti, Russia
¤¤¤¤ Institute of North Industrial Ecology Problems, Kola Science Centre, RAS, Apatity, Russia
«««« Canadian Museum of Nature, Ottawa, Canada
»»»» Avrorin Polar-Alpine Botanical Garden-Institute, RAS, Apatity, Russia
Open Access

Abstract

Background

The "Flora of Russia" project on iNaturalist brought together professional scientists and amateur naturalists from all over the country. Over 10,000 people were involved in the data collection.

New information

Within 20 months, the participants accumulated 750,143 photo observations of 6,857 species of the Russian flora. This constitutes the largest dataset of open spatial data on the country’s biodiversity and a leading source of data on the current state of the national flora. About 87% of all project data, i.e. 652,285 observations, are available under free licences (CC0, CC-BY, CC-BY-NC) and can be freely used in scientific, educational and environmental activities.

Introduction

Since 2008, iNaturalist (https://www.inaturalist.org/) has been crowdsourcing biodiversity observations made by citizen scientists, as well as their taxonomic identifications. Hundreds of publications have already taken into account iNaturalist data for use in research, conservation and policy (e.g. Ocampo-Peñuela et al. 2016, Chandler et al. 2017, Heberling and Isaac 2018). There are three key themes that iNaturalist embraces: social interaction; shareability of data, tools and code; and scalability of the platform and community (Seltzer 2019).

The advent of large, technology-based resources allows ecologists and biologists to work at spatio-temporal scales previously unimaginable (White et al. 2015). With 50M observations accompanied by photo or audio evidence, the global iNaturalist dataset is one of the largest online collections of biodiversity data. It is partially represented in the GBIF, with the exclusion of observations which remain unidentified or have unconfirmed or missing licence information. Nonetheless, the GBIF export tools provide excellent data usability and the resulting exports come with a DOI which one can use for citation in publications. The GBIF data usage counter shows that iNaturalist GBIF-mediated data gained 781 citations (as of 11 Sep 2020) making it one of the most commonly-used datasets amongst the GBIF (Ueda 2020).

Many research papers focus on the employment of iNaturalist data as a primary source (Heberling and Isaac 2018, Seregin et al. 2020). For instance, iNaturalist includes dozens of metadata fields for every observation and was employed as a case study in the theory of long-tailed datasets (Cui et al. 2019). Observations from the iNaturalist Challenge at FGVC 2017 with links to 675,000 licensed images of 5,089 species have been widely used in computer vision training (Cui et al. 2018; Van Horn et al. 2018; Zheng et al. 2019). iNaturalist observations and images have been be employed as a data source in classical taxonomy of tracheophytes (Svoboda and Harris 2018), studies of the distribution of gecko clones (Lapwong and Juthong 2018), plant phenology (Barve et al. 2020) and fish infections on a continental scale (Happel 2019). Moreover, Skejo et al. (2020) recently published a description of a new species, based on photos from iNaturalist in addition to scarce museum material. The platform has been suggested as a suitable agent for storage of photo vouchers associated with museum specimens (Heberling and Isaac 2018).

Biodiversity documentation, by the means of aggregation of individual observations, is the main goal of iNaturalist. Consistent with this are the many examples of papers dealing with new noteworthy records of either alien (Vendetti et al. 2018; Hiller and Haelewaters 2019; Liebgold 2019) or native organisms (Rosenberg 2018; Schuette et al. 2018) made by amateur naturalists. Further accumulation of data made possible precise documentation of alien species distribution on a nationwide scale (Ciceoi et al. 2017), their expansion process (Oficialdegui et al. 2020), routine monitoring of invasive species (Larson et al. 2020), documentation of at-risk species beyond the boundaries of protected areas (Young et al. 2019) and a global assessment of species’ extinction risk with the inclusion of citizen science data (Gardiner and Bachman 2016). Spatial data from iNaturalist have been employed in studies of bird collisions with windows (Winton et al. 2018), global snakebite mortality (Longbottom et al. 2018) and the search for environmental triggers in orchids (Lori et al. 2018).

It has recently been shown that iNaturalist serves as a tool indispensable for avoiding biases in urban biodiversity data (Li et al. 2019), for making decisions related to the urban management of red foxes and coyotes (Mueller et al. 2019) and for testing urban biotic homogenisation with the use of data generated by the participants of the City Nature Challenge (Leong and Trautwein 2019). There are positive examples of iNaturalist usage in data accumulation by researchers (Ocampo-Peñuela et al. 2016), as well as the citizen community helping scientists with a supply of data (Brown et al. 2019). In addition, there are examples of iNaturalist usage during university courses of classical zoology and botany together with standard field guides and keys (Unger et al. 2020).

The iNaturalist dataset at various taxonomic and/or geographical extents has been checked for completeness of data against complete literature data (Goldstein et al. 2018), expert-based range maps (Fourcade 2016), museum collections (Spear et al. 2017) and available inventories within protected areas (Jacobs and Zipf 2017). Vahidi et al. (2017) performed a general quality assessment of iNaturalist data which made possible the revealing of the majority of attribute and positional errors amongst the crowd-sourced biodiversity observations. Borzée et al. (2019) published a case study on cross-verification of iNaturalist observations against published georeferenced molecular data, whereas Maritz and Maritz (2020) compared Facebook versus iNaturalist as data sources in the assessment of trophic interactions. Prudic et al. (2018) verified the completeness of iNaturalist data with various field techniques of butterfly data collection.

The project "Flora of Russia", which includes all verified ("research-grade") observations of vascular plants from the country, was launched by the Moscow University team on 9 Jan 2019 to support data collection for the "Atlas of the Russian flora" (Seregin et al. 2020). During the first 20 months, the number of identified and verified iNaturalist observations of vascular plants from Russia increased 68-fold and the number of involved users increased 10-fold. Here, we present the characteristics of the dataset as for 9 Sep 2020, soon after the project reached two notable milestones of 750,000 verified observations and 10,000 observers (Fig. 1, Fig. 2 and Fig. 3).

Figure 1.  

Dynamics of identified and verified ("research-grade") observations of the "Flora of Russia" project since the inception. Blue dots represent the research grade observations and red dots correspond to unverified observations from the project's backlog. About 11K observations were deleted from iNaturalist by a single "mega-observer" on 25 Feb 2020.

Figure 2.  

The "Flora of Russia" project species number dynamics since the inception on 9 Jan 2019. From 31 Jul 2020, the number of species stabilised due to ongoing expert data cleaning activity.

Figure 3.  

Observers (blue dots) and members (red dots) of the "Flora of Russia" project since the inception on 9 Jan 2019.

Fig. 3 shows both the number of observers and project members. Since the collection projects on iNaturalist are working as filters, all RG observations of vascular plants from Russia are covered by the project giving an impressive figure of 10K observers. As of 13 Sep 2020, 1,736 members of iNaturalist have formally joined the "Flora of Russia" project by pressing the "Join" button. As a result, they clearly affiliate their data with the project by an automatically-generated logo on every observation page and receive notifications on project updates and journal posts. Those observers who are not members of the project still get benefits in the form of identifications, because experts are inspecting all observations available on iNaturalist.

General description

Purpose: 

For a number of years, Russian professional and amateur biologists were using Internet-based national networking systems of the georeferenced data collection for birds, invertebrates and plants. For instance, Plantarium is the most popular Russian-language resource for collecting plant and lichen photographs from around the world with emphasis on Russia and adjacent regions. However, unlike iNaturalist, it does not allow data export nor is these data included in the GBIF, since photos and other data lack licence indications. In addition, contributing observations to Plantarium requires more effort from the members.

After digitisation of the nation's second largest herbarium (Seregin 2018), the Moscow University team launched a public awareness campaign to support community-generated data collection for plants. We decided not to spend budget on our own crowd-sourcing system, but to use and promote the international iNaturalist platform as suitable for data collection in Russia with a number of efficient tools and a global community.

Russia on iNaturalist: By late 2018, Russia was the 18th country on iNaturalist in terms of the number of verifiable observations (47,888). After 20 months of the project activity, we can see drastic changes in the biodiversity data coverage across Russia with a strong emphasis on tracheophytes.

Currently, Russia holds fifth place amongst countries represented on iNaturalist in terms of the number of verifiable observations of all groups of organisms and the third place by observations of vascular plants in particular (Table 1).

Table 1.

The top ten countries by the number of verifiable observations on iNaturalist (as of 5 Sep 2020). In Tables 1-6 of this section, Russia is presented within the borders on 1 Jan 2014 (so called "standard places" on iNaturalist), i.e. excluding the Republic of Crimea and the City of Sevastopol claimed by Ukraine.

Rank Country All groups Tracheophytes

Proportion of tracheophytes amongst all groups

1 USA 25,896,649 10,937,966 42.2
2 Canada 3,606,976 1,401,370 38.9
3 Mexico 2,305,831 721,168 31.3
4 Australia 1,366,788 298,223 21.8
5 Russia 1,329,399 826,949 62.2
6 UK 1,150,580 512,311 44.5
7 South Africa 972,158 548,997 56.5
8 New Zealand 821,308 376,942 45.9
9 Italy 705,192 243,265 34.5
10 Germany 689,644 247,961 36.0
WORLD 48,612,707 19,308,096 39.7

Amongst the top ten countries, Russia has the highest proportion of tracheophyte observations of all uploaded to iNaturalist (62.2%). A community of birdwatchers is also quite active when compared to other top countries, whereas other groups of organisms are still lacking much attention (Table 2). Birds are the primary object of attention for at least eight co-authors of this paper, whereas three of us are focused on fungi.

Table 2.

The proportion of popular taxonomic groups amongst verifiable observations for the top ten countries on iNaturalist (5 Sep 2020)

Rank Country Tracheophytes Birds Insects Other groups
1 Russia 62 15 13 10
2 South Africa 56 11 15 18
3 New Zealand 46 11 17 27
4 UK 45 11 28 17
5 USA 42 13 24 22
6 Canada 39 13 28 20
7 Germany 36 15 34 15
8 Italy 34 12 34 20
9 Mexico 31 26 23 20
10 Australia 22 18 31 29
WORLD 40 14 25 21

Russia has the highest proportion of vascular plants amongst identified and confirmed observations which are classified as "research grade" on iNaturalist (Table 3). Moreover, Russia is the leading country on iNaturalist amongst the top ten with regard to the proportion of confirmed observations amongst all tracheophyte records. As we showed in 2019 (Seregin et al. 2020), the number of unconfirmed plant observations in Russia usually rapidly increases from May to August and decreases from September to April, when experts most intensively work with the backlog of unprocessed observations.

Table 3.

Identified and verified ("research grade", RG) observations for the top ten countries on iNaturalist (as of 5 Sep 2020)

Rank Country All groups Tracheophytes Proportion of tracheophytes in RG observations Proportion of RG observations in tracheophytes
1 USA 15,359,670 6,023,579 39.2 55.1
2 Canada 2,264,736 886,530 39.1 63.3
3 Mexico 1,472 829 437,017 29.7 60.6
4 Russia 1,049,298 704,273 67.1 85.2
5 Australia 864,251 173,741 20.1 58.3
6 UK 704,083 285,639 40.6 55.8
7 South Africa 630,269 360,377 57.2 65.6
8 New Zealand 589,106 311,365 52.9 82.6
9 Italy 459,868 142,800 31.1 58.7
10 Germany 455,542 171,487 37.6 69.2
WORLD 29,184,780 11,091,055 38.0 57.4

To facilitate further accumulation of the project's data into the GBIF, we ask our observers to specify open Creative Commons Licences, such as CC0 (http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/), 2) CC-BY (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/) and 3) CC-BY-NC (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/) for their observations. We do this on a regular basis in the form of the project's journal posts available to every member of our community. As a result of this activity, 83.8% of all observations on iNaturalist from Russia (and as many as 85.3% in tracheophytes) are freely licensed, making Russia the leader in open-access biodiversity data on iNaturalist (Table 4).

Table 4.

Verifiable observations with free licences (CC0, CC-BY & CC-BY-NC) for the top ten countries on iNaturalist (as of 5 Sep 2020)

Rank Country All groups Proportion of observations with free licences Tracheophytes Proportion of observations with free licences
1 USA 15,566,609 60.1 6,568,148 60.0
2 Canada 2,483,532 68.9 965,480 68.9
3 Mexico 1,264,041 54.8 375,607 52.1
4 Russia 1,114,574 83.8 705,631 85.3
5 Australia 772,926 56.6 183,410 61.5
6 UK 729,997 63.4 322,184 62.9
7 South Africa 620,335 63.8 335,863 61.2
8 New Zealand 608,534 74.1 285,092 75.6
9 Germany 494,927 71.8 162,607 65.6
10 Italy 387,866 55.0 139,812 57.5
WORLD 29,540,093 60.8 11,797,509 61.1

As a result of intense expert activity and the promotion of free licensing, 73.8% of tracheophyte records from Russia have become available in the GBIF (Table 5) which is the highest proportion amongst the leading countries in iNaturalist. Since 2020, the iNaturalist dataset has become the largest source of data on the Russian biodiversity available through the GBIF.

Table 5.

iNaturalist records available in the GBIF ("research-grade" observations with free licences) for the top ten countries on iNaturalist (as of 3 Sep 2020) (Ueda 2020)

Rank Country All groups Proportion of GBIF records Tracheophytes Proportion of GBIF records
1 USA 10,286,645 39.7 3,947,962 36.1
2 Canada 1,651,249 45.8 638,998 45.6
3 Russia 903,189 67.9 610,344 73.8
4 Mexico 897,372 38.9 241,058 33.4
5 Australia 688,655 50.4 129,962 43.6
6 New Zealand 495,567 60.3 262,461 69.6
7 UK 467,082 40.6 188,451 36.8
8 South Africa 447,995 46.1 250,086 45.6
9 Germany 354,619 51.4 128,778 51.9
10 Italy 289,076 41.0 107,780 44.3
WORLD 19,745,698 40.6 7,409,526 38.4

The number of observers with at least a single verifiable observation is not so high in Russia, equalling just 14K (Table 6). Nonetheless, the average productivity of the members of the community is extremely high. On average, 93 verifiable observations have been created by each observer across all groups of organisms, while, with regard to vascular plants, the number is 73 "research-grade" observations per observer, which makes the highest level of observer activity amongst the top ten countries on iNaturalist.

Table 6.

Observers and their average productivity for the top ten countries on iNaturalist (as of 5 Sep 2020)

Rank Country All groups (observers with at least one verifiable observation) Observations per observer Tracheophytes (observers with at least one "research-grade" observation) Observations per observer
1 USA 706,531 37 321,154 19
2 Canada 87,559 41 40,415 22
3 Mexico 53,150 43 19,244 23
4 UK 49,955 23 22,228 13
5 Italy 25,331 28 8,839 16
6 Australia 23,679 58 7,098 24
7 Germany 17,278 40 7,691 22
8 New Zealand 16,535 50 7,095 44
9 Russia 14,328 93 9,602 73
10 South Africa 11,031 88 5,466 66
WORLD 1,282,002 38 546,182 20

Russia is globally unique taking into account the active growth of data within the "Flora of Russia" project. Amongst the top ten countries on iNaturalist, Russia has achieved:

1. the highest proportion of tracheophytes amongst all observations;

2. the highest proportion of identified and verified ("research-grade") observations amongst tracheophytes;

3. the highest proportion of both free licences (CC0, CC-BY & CC-BY-NC) and GBIF records;

4. the highest number of observations per observer.

Project description

Title: 

"Flora of Russia" project on iNaturalist

Personnel: 

As of 13 Sep 2020, 1,736 members of iNaturalist have joined the project (see also Fig. 3). The core of the project team is formed by 129 people, who are listed simultaneously amongst the top 200 identifiers and top 500 observers of the project, including 15 project members affiliated with the Lomonosov Moscow State University. Of the 129 members, 112 confirmed their formal contribution to this data paper (see the "Author contributions" section and the "Community coverage" section for additional information). Dr. Alexey P. Seregin is the founder and an administrator of the project.

Study area description: 

The project covers the territory of the Russian Federation as defined by the national legislation, i.e. including the Republic of Crimea and the City of Sevastopol claimed by Ukraine.

Design description: 

Main features of iNaturalist as a data collection platform

Any user can register as an "observer" on iNaturalist. Users may upload observations of organisms through their account using the website https://www.inaturalist.org/ or the free mobile applications "iNaturalist" and "Seek". A total of 1.28M observers are involved in the work of the platform, including 14.3K observers with at least one observation from Russia (Table 6).

In order to meet the minimum requirements for further scientific use, an observation needs to have: (1) a date; (2) a georeference; (3) a photograph/series of photographs or (for animals) an audio recording(s) of the object's sounds, created by the observer; (4) the organism needs to be recorded in the wild. Provided that these requirements are fulfilled, the observation is marked as "needs ID", regardless of whether the author identified the organism or not. Once an observation receives identical identifications by more than two thirds of the iNaturalist users at the level of species (in some cases of genus), it becomes "research-grade", a category for verified observations. A supporting identification by a second user makes an observation "research-grade" while identification by a single user is not enough. Disagreeing identifications may once again exclude an observation from this category. Low-quality photos or photos of plants accurate identification of which requires a study of some micromorphological, anatomical or genetic traits usually do not reach the "research grade" or, in the latter cases, remain identified and verified only at the level of genus.

The observers may choose a licence allowing further re-use of the data. Observations licensed with three Creative Commons Licences (CC0, CC-BY, CC-BY-NC) and of "research-grade" quality are automatically exported to the GBIF. As of 5 Sep 2020, the iNaturalist database contained 48.6M observations that have met the minimum quality requirements (Table 1), of which 29.2M have achieved "research-grade" (Table 3). Unfortunately, only 19.7M observations have been exported to the GBIF due to copyright restrictions (Table 5).

The implementation of artificial intelligence (AI) for identification is a key feature of iNaturalist (Van Horn et al. 2018, Cui et al. 2018). It gives the users a suggestion about the most similar species after analysing the photos ("visually similar") and taking into account the geographical distribution of other records ("seen nearby"). Initially, the portal's AI compared the newly-uploaded photos with a basic set of images, which, in 2017, comprised 859,000 photos of more than 5,000 species. The images of varying quality had been collected using different types of cameras, but their identifications have been double-checked. Primary results showed that modern AI methods, at that time, gave an accurate identification for 67% of observations, which well illustrates the complexity of the dataset (Van Horn et al. 2018). In 2018, most images of plants and animals from any part of the world were likely to receive from the system an identification of species inhabiting North America. Over the course of 2019 and 2020, AI has almost stopped suggesting incorrect identifications for plants within European Russia (Seregin et al. 2020). It still works somewhat worse with photos from Asian Russia and the Caucasus. Millions of new photos reviewed by the expert community and constantly added to the library of standard images allow AI to improve the performance. Its capabilities are, however, still inferior to expert assessments with regard to certain groups of organisms or certain geographic territories. Nevertheless, the system's general awareness of the world flora is many times larger than that of an individual botanist. In many ways, this particular feature of iNaturalist attracts both amateurs and professionals. The success of iNaturalist has made possible the further use of AI for species recognition by photograph for millions of images in the GBIF database (Robertson et al. 2019).

Portal on the flora of Russia

To collect data on the plant distribution in the City of Moscow, the Moscow University team initially organised the "Flora of Moscow" project on iNaturalist on 29 Dec 2018. An immediate positive feedback from users and a surge of interest forced us to create 85 more regional projects with a uniform ideology in early January 2019 and organise them as part of the "Flora of Russia" umbrella project. Each regional portal automatically includes observations of vascular plants uploaded on iNaturalist which have achieved "research-grade" and found within the administrative boundaries of a specific federal territory. The home page of each regional portal displays its statistics and basic information.

The "Flora of Russia" homepage (Fig. 4) includes a "scoreboard" with a ranking of regional projects (ordered by the number of observations, species and observers), basic statistics, a list of the latest observations, news from the project journal and a general map of all data. There are links leading to the project description, the project journal, the rankings of the top observers (ordered by the number of observations and species), top identifiers, most often recorded species and detailed statistical reports. Thus, both regional projects and the all-Russian portal are organised in the form of ranking tables, stimulating both individual and team activity of observers in accordance with the gamification paradigm (Bowser et al. 2013).

Figure 4.  

The homepage of the "Flora of Russia" project on iNaturalist (Russian-language interface, statistics as of 15 Sep 2020).

The experts (most of whom are the authors of this paper) review the unverified and unnamed observations to suggest the correct name which may either confirm or disprove the opinion of the observer. Typically, most clear photographs from European Russia and the Russian Far East are identified within a couple days after uploading.

Funding: 

The project is functioning on a voluntary basis. Although being created in the Lomonosov Moscow State University, it does not have formal institutional funding. Members of the project search for their own budget for field trips and online activity. Some grants of the co-authors are acknowledged in this paper.

Sampling methods

Sampling description: 

The standard procedure of sampling is described on iNaturalist in the form of 17 paragraphs in the "Observations" section of the help page (last revised 8 Sep 2020 by Sam Kieschnick).

Quality control: 

Data quality control is necessary for maintaining a high quality of records within a dataset. In the "Flora of Russia" project description, there is a well-structured, detailed and constantly improving section with recommendations for users in Russian. Apart from the general information (including short videos about iNaturalist and a description of available research tools of the portal), there are two particularly important sections, i.e. "Recommendations for new users" and "Recommendations for event curators". Both sections provide detailed instructions for the user on what, how and where to create a good-quality observation on iNaturalist. However, many users are not familiar with these guidelines. This imposes a certain responsibility on the identifiers and the project curators, who act as data stewards. The most important and/or frequently occurring issues are listed below.

For each project on iNauralist, at least one or two curators should be assigned to review the uploaded observations and make comments, if necessary. The most frequent mistakes are:

  1. low-quality or wrong-angle photos,
  2. observations of cultivated plants without a relevant indication,
  3. either unintentional or intentional duplication of the same observation,
  4. unintentional merging of numerous observations into a single one,
  5. lack of date or location of an observation,
  6. lack of any original identification (at least a coarse one),
  7. upload of copyright media.

In some cases, an inaccurate location for an observation shows up automatically, caused by specific GPS settings on the smartphone or camera. We report these issues to observers for further manual correction or mark such observations as "location is not accurate". We highly recommend georeferencing using the "GPS only" mode instead of either "GPS plus mobile networks" and "mobile networks only". The latter two options may shift the observation's georeference to the nearest mobile tower instead of the actual observer's location. Additionally, all records with positional accuracy exceeding 50,000 m were marked as having inaccurate location on 25 Sep 2020 and reported to users in the project journal post. Suspicious positional accuracy of 0, 1 or 2 metres recorded in thousands of observations is an artifact set up automatically during the uploading of observations by the devices.

Another difficult and common problem is the separation of cultivated plants from garden escapes (naturalised or casual). Cultivated plants may be well recognisable and could reach "research grade" rapidly. We ask experts and project curators to double-check "research-grade" observations to detect plants growing only in cultivation.

A well-designed and useful feature in iNaturalist is the possibility to call for attention of a specific user using the "@" prefix (for example, @krestov). This is very important for maintaining the appropriate quality as experts may respond and help in identification.

Undoubtedly, the data quality depends on the quality of the uploaded photographs and field experience of the users. We ask project curators to post links to regional checklists, field guides and illustrated atlases for interested naturalists in the project description.

Constant quality control is especially important during various events such as bioblitzes or mandatory student practices. As their numerous participants mostly lack experience in collecting biodiversity data through iNaturalist, the work of curators and teachers should be constant during the whole period of these events.

Geographic coverage

Description: 

Russia is a large country with an area of over 17 million km2 and an unevenly distributed human population. For instance, in Chukotka, the population density is only 0.07 people per 1 km2, whereas in the City of Moscow, it is 4,925 people per 1 km2 (Table 7). The geographic coverage of the dataset is characterised by significant spatial disparities in the presented data for all indexes, including the number of observations, species and observers (Fig. 5).

Table 7.

Human population and area of the regions of Russia (official data)

Regional project Area Rank (area) Proportion in Russia's area Population Rank (population) Proportion in Russia's population Population density Rank (population density)
Flora of Yakutia 3,083,523 1 18.01 967,009 56 0.66 0.31 82
Krasnoyarsk Krai Flora 2,366,797 2 13.82 2,874,026 13 1.96 1.21 79
Khabarovsk Krai Flora 787,633 3 4.6 1,321,473 35 0.9 1.68 78
Irkutsk Oblast Flora 774,846 4 4.52 2,397,763 20 1.63 3.09 70
Flora of Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug 769,250 5 4.49 541,479 71 0.37 0.7 80
Flora of Chukotka 721,481 6 4.21 49,663 84 0.03 0.07 85
Flora of Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug 534,801 7 3.12 1,663,795 28 1.13 3.11 69
Kamchatka Flora 464,275 8 2.71 314,723 79 0.21 0.68 81
Magadan Oblast Flora 462,464 9 2.7 141,234 83 0.1 0.31 83
Zabaykalsky Krai Flora 431,892 10 2.52 1,065,785 49 0.73 2.47 73
Komi Republic Flora 416,774 11 2.43 830,235 60 0.57 1.99 76
Arkhangelsk Oblast Flora 413,103 12 2.41 1,100,290 47 0.75 2.66 72
Amur Oblast Flora 361,908 13 2.11 793,194 62 0.54 2.19 75
Buryat Republic Flora 351,334 14 2.05 983,273 55 0.67 2.8 71
Tomsk Oblast Flora 314,391 15 1.84 1,077,442 48 0.73 3.43 67
Sverdlovsk Oblast Flora 194,307 16 1.13 4,315,699 5 2.94 22.21 43
Flora of Karelia 180,520 17 1.05 618,056 69 0.42 3.42 68
Novosibirsk Oblast Flora 177,756 18 1.04 2,793,384 15 1.9 15.71 50
Flora of Nenets Autonomous Okrug 176,810 19 1.03 43,829 85 0.03 0.25 84
Tyva Republic Flora 168,604 20 0.98 324,423 78 0.22 1.92 77
Altai Krai Flora 167,996 21 0.98 2,332,813 21 1.59 13.89 52
Primorsky Krai Flora 164,673 22 0.96 1,902,718 26 1.3 11.55 55
Perm Krai Flora 160,236 23 0.94 2,610,800 17 1.78 16.29 48
Tyumen Oblast Flora 160,122 24 0.94 1,518,695 30 1.03 9.48 60
Murmansk Oblast Flora 144,902 25 0.85 748,056 63 0.51 5.16 64
Vologda Oblast Flora 144,527 26 0.84 1,167,713 43 0.8 8.08 62
Bashkortostan Flora 142,947 27 0.83 4,051,005 7 2.76 28.34 39
Omsk Oblast Flora 141,140 28 0.82 1,944,195 24 1.32 13.77 53
Orenburg Oblast Flora 123,702 29 0.72 1,963,007 23 1.34 15.87 49
Kirov Oblast Flora 120,374 30 0.7 1,272,109 37 0.87 10.57 59
Volgograd Oblast Flora 112,877 31 0.66 2,507,509 18 1.71 22.21 44
Saratov Oblast Flora 101,240 32 0.59 2,440,815 19 1.66 24.11 42
Rostov Oblast Flora 100,967 33 0.59 4,202,320 6 2.86 41.62 25
Kemerovo Oblast Flora 95,725 34 0.56 2,674,256 16 1.82 27.94 41
Altai Republic Flora 92,903 35 0.54 218,866 81 0.15 2.36 74
Chelyabinsk Oblast Flora 88,529 36 0.52 3,475,753 9 2.37 39.26 26
Sakhalin Oblast Flora 87,101 37 0.51 489,638 74 0.33 5.62 63
Tver Oblast Flora 84,201 38 0.49 1,269,636 38 0.86 15.08 51
Leningrad Oblast Flora 83,908 39 0.49 1,847,867 27 1.26 22.02 45
Nizhny Novgorod Oblast Flora 76,624 40 0.45 3,214,623 10 2.19 41.95 24
Krasnodar Krai Flora 75,485 41 0.44 5,648,235 3 3.85 74.83 8
Flora of Kalmykia 74,731 42 0.44 272,647 80 0.19 3.65 66
Kurgan Oblast Flora 71,488 43 0.42 834,701 59 0.57 11.68 54
Tatarstan Flora 67,847 44 0.4 3,898,628 8 2.66 57.46 17
Stavropol Krai Flora 66,160 45 0.39 2,795,243 14 1.9 42.25 23
Flora of Khakassia 61,569 46 0.36 536,167 72 0.37 8.71 61
Kostroma Oblast Flora 60,211 47 0.35 637,267 67 0.43 10.58 58
Pskov Oblast Flora 55,399 48 0.32 629,651 68 0.43 11.37 56
Novgorod Oblast Flora 54,501 49 0.32 600,296 70 0.41 11.01 57
Samara Oblast Flora 53,565 50 0.31 3,183,038 11 2.17 59.42 14
Voronezh Oblast Flora 52,216 51 0.3 2,327,821 22 1.59 44.58 22
Dagestan Flora 50,270 52 0.29 3,086,126 12 2.1 61.39 13
Smolensk Oblast Flora 49,779 53 0.29 942,363 57 0.64 18.93 47
Astrakhan Oblast Flora 49,024 54 0.29 1,014,065 51 0.69 20.69 46
Moscow Oblast Flora 44,329 55 0.26 7,599,647 2 5.18 171.44 4
Penza Oblast Flora 43,352 56 0.25 1,318,103 36 0.9 30.4 35
Udmurt Republic Flora 42,061 57 0.25 1,507,390 31 1.03 35.84 28
Ryazan Oblast Flora 39,605 58 0.23 1,114,137 45 0.76 28.13 40
Ulyanovsk Oblast Flora 37,181 59 0.22 1,238,416 40 0.84 33.31 32
Flora of Jewish Autonomous Oblast 36,271 60 0.21 159,913 82 0.11 4.41 65
Yaroslavl Oblast Flora 36,177 61 0.21 1,259,612 39 0.86 34.82 29
Bryansk Oblast Flora 34,857 62 0.2 1,200,187 42 0.82 34.43 30
Tambov Oblast Flora 34,462 63 0.2 1,015,966 50 0.69 29.48 37
Kursk Oblast Flora 29,997 64 0.18 1,107,041 46 0.75 36.9 27
Kaluga Oblast Flora 29,777 65 0.17 1,009,377 52 0.69 33.9 31
Vladimir Oblast Flora 29,084 66 0.17 1,365,805 34 0.93 46.96 20
Belgorod Oblast Flora 27,134 67 0.16 1,547,418 29 1.05 57.03 18
Flora of Mordovia 26,128 68 0.15 795,504 61 0.54 30.45 34
Flora of the Crimea 26,081 69 0.15 1,911,818 25 1.3 73.3 9
Tula Oblast Flora 25,679 70 0.15 1,478,818 32 1.01 57.59 16
Oryol Oblast Flora 24,652 71 0.14 739,467 64 0.5 30 36
Lipetsk Oblast Flora 24,047 72 0.14 1,144,035 44 0.78 47.57 19
Mari El Flora 23,375 73 0.14 680,380 66 0.46 29.11 38
Ivanovo Oblast Flora 21,437 74 0.13 1,004,180 53 0.68 46.84 21
Chuvash Republic Flora 18,343 75 0.11 1,223,395 41 0.83 66.7 11
Chechen Republic Flora 15,647 76 0.09 1,456,951 33 0.99 93.11 6
Kaliningrad Oblast Flora 15,125 77 0.09 1,002,187 54 0.68 66.26 12
Flora of Karachay-Cherkessia 14,277 78 0.08 465,563 75 0.32 32.61 33
Flora of Kabardino-Balkaria 12,470 79 0.07 866,219 58 0.59 69.45 10
Flora of North Ossetia 7,987 80 0.05 699,253 65 0.48 87.55 7
Flora of Adygea 7,792 81 0.05 454,744 76 0.31 58.36 15
Flora of Ingushetia 3,628 82 0.02 497,393 73 0.34 137.1 5
Flora of Moscow 2,561 83 0.01 12,615,279 1 8.59 4,925.92 1
St Petersburg Flora 1,403 84 0.01 5,383,890 4 3.67 3,837.41 2
Sevastopol Flora 864 85 0.01 443,212 77 0.3 512.98 3
Figure 5.  

A map of 750K observations from the "Flora of Russia" project showing an extreme disproportion in data coverage (source: iNaturalist.org).

Number of observations. The key index of the "Flora of Russia" project is the number of uploaded observations (Fig. 1). The project reached 750,000 observations of "research-grade" quality on 7 Sep 2020, whereas ca. 135,000 unverified observations make the project's backlog, which is not included in the dataset. The stable snapshot of the dataset produced on 8 Sep 2020 contains 750,143 records (see "Data resources" section).

The City of Moscow topped the project by the number of observations from 18 Aug 2019 to 15 Jun 2020, when Moscow Oblast, the region with the largest community of observers, took the lead (Table 8). Other regions of Central Russia - Bryansk, Tula, Nizhny Novgorod and Kursk Oblasts - hold the third to sixth places in the ranking.

Table 8.

Observations of the "Flora of Russia" project distributed amongst regional projects

Regional project Observa-tions Rank (observa-tions) Per 1K capita Rank (per 1K capita) Per 1,000 km2 Rank (per 1,000 km2) Per recorded species Rank (per recorded species)
Moscow Oblast Flora 73,271 1 9.64 14 1,652.9 4 65.1 1
Flora of Moscow 66,227 2 5.25 29 25,859.8 1 60.9 2
Bryansk Oblast Flora 34,913 3 29.09 3 1,001.6 7 31.1 3
Tula Oblast Flora 27,456 4 18.57 8 1,069.2 5 29.0 4
Nizhny Novgorod Oblast Flora 26,667 5 8.30 17 348.0 14 26.5 5
Kursk Oblast Flora 26,340 6 23.79 4 878.1 8 22.8 8
Novosibirsk Oblast Flora 22,914 7 8.20 18 128.9 24 24.4 7
Sevastopol Flora 21,986 8 49.61 1 25,446.8 2 16.0 19
Altai Krai Flora 21,283 9 9.12 15 126.7 26 18.3 12
Omsk Oblast Flora 19,749 10 10.16 13 139.9 23 25.4 6
Irkutsk Oblast Flora 19,658 11 8.20 19 25.4 56 18.1 13
Sverdlovsk Oblast Flora 18,595 12 4.31 34 95.7 34 17.0 15
Chuvash Republic Flora 18,502 13 15.12 10 1,008.7 6 22.4 9
Tatarstan Flora 17,725 14 4.55 32 261.2 16 17.0 14
Voronezh Oblast Flora 17,401 15 7.48 22 333.3 15 15.4 20
Flora of Mordovia 16,654 16 20.94 5 637.4 9 19.7 10
Flora of the Crimea 16,562 17 8.66 16 635.0 10 10.5 31
Bashkortostan Flora 16,023 18 3.96 38 112.1 32 16.5 17
Yaroslavl Oblast Flora 15,091 19 11.98 11 417.1 13 18.4 11
Vladimir Oblast Flora 14,529 20 10.64 12 499.6 12 17.0 16
Kamchatka Flora 13,975 21 44.40 2 30.1 53 16.3 18
Kostroma Oblast Flora 12,728 22 19.97 6 211.4 19 15.0 21
Chelyabinsk Oblast Flora 10,214 23 2.94 45 115.4 29 14.2 23
Leningrad Oblast Flora 9,860 24 5.34 28 117.5 28 13.7 24
Tver Oblast Flora 9,607 25 7.57 21 114.1 30 12.7 26
St Petersburg Flora 9,164 26 1.70 60 6,531.7 3 14.7 22
Krasnodar Krai Flora 8,546 27 1.51 64 113.2 31 6.7 40
Samara Oblast Flora 8,520 28 2.68 48 159.1 21 11.1 29
Krasnoyarsk Krai Flora 8,395 29 2.92 46 3.5 74 7.7 37
Flora of Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug 8,031 30 4.83 30 15.0 65 13.2 25
Primorsky Krai Flora 7,792 31 4.10 36 47.3 40 5.4 44
Kaliningrad Oblast Flora 7,700 32 7.68 20 509.1 11 11.2 27
Dagestan Flora 7,588 33 2.46 51 150.9 22 3.9 58
Kaluga Oblast Flora 7,404 34 7.34 23 248.6 17 10.9 30
Tyumen Oblast Flora 7,002 35 4.61 31 43.7 42 11.2 28
Belgorod Oblast Flora 6,271 36 4.05 37 231.1 18 8.1 34
Perm Krai Flora 5,832 37 2.23 53 36.4 47 8.5 32
Tomsk Oblast Flora 5,762 38 5.35 27 18.3 61 7.7 35
Kirov Oblast Flora 5,278 39 4.15 35 43.8 41 8.4 33
Udmurt Republic Flora 4,025 40 2.67 49 95.7 35 6.9 39
Buryat Republic Flora 3,644 41 3.71 40 10.4 68 4.3 52
Altai Republic Flora 3,571 42 16.32 9 38.4 45 4.6 50
Flora of Karelia 3,517 43 5.69 25 19.5 59 7.7 36
Volgograd Oblast Flora 3,512 44 1.40 65 31.1 51 4.7 49
Murmansk Oblast Flora 3,370 45 4.51 33 23.3 57 7.1 38
Saratov Oblast Flora 3,358 46 1.38 66 33.2 50 5.7 42
Ryazan Oblast Flora 3,319 47 2.98 44 83.8 36 5.8 41
Kemerovo Oblast Flora 3,305 48 1.24 67 34.5 48 5.0 45
Sakhalin Oblast Flora 3,198 49 6.53 24 36.7 46 4.2 54
Lipetsk Oblast Flora 3,087 50 2.70 47 128.4 25 5.6 43
Rostov Oblast Flora 2,920 51 0.69 73 28.9 54 3.7 59
Arkhangelsk Oblast Flora 2,822 52 2.56 50 6.8 73 4.0 57
Flora of Karachay-Cherkessia 2,642 53 5.67 26 185.1 20 3.6 60
Amur Oblast Flora 2,601 54 3.28 42 7.2 72 3.5 63
Ulyanovsk Oblast Flora 2,415 55 1.95 57 65.0 37 4.8 46
Pskov Oblast Flora 2,398 56 3.81 39 43.3 43 4.2 53
Ivanovo Oblast Flora 2,131 57 2.12 54 99.4 33 4.7 48
Penza Oblast Flora 2,067 58 1.57 62 47.7 39 3.6 61
Kurgan Oblast Flora 1,970 59 2.36 52 27.6 55 4.6 51
Flora of Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug 1,944 60 3.59 41 2.5 76 4.7 47
Vologda Oblast Flora 1,943 61 1.66 61 13.4 66 4.1 56
Novgorod Oblast Flora 1,832 62 3.05 43 33.6 49 4.1 55
Mari El Flora 1,207 63 1.77 59 51.6 38 2.7 67
Orenburg Oblast Flora 1,179 64 0.60 76 9.5 69 2.7 66
Stavropol Krai Flora 1,149 65 0.41 81 17.4 62 2.6 68
Flora of Khakassia 1,135 66 2.12 56 18.4 60 2.8 65
Tambov Oblast Flora 1,069 67 1.05 68 31.0 52 3.6 62
Zabaykalsky Krai Flora 1,024 68 0.96 69 2.4 77 2.3 72
Flora of Adygea 965 69 2.12 55 123.8 27 2.1 74
Flora of Chukotka 928 70 18.69 7 1.3 79 3.3 64
Smolensk Oblast Flora 856 71 0.91 70 17.2 63 2.5 70
Komi Republic Flora 739 72 0.89 71 1.8 78 2.4 71
Khabarovsk Krai Flora 609 73 0.46 79 0.8 81 2.0 75
Oryol Oblast Flora 570 74 0.77 72 23.1 58 2.2 73
Flora of Yakutia 525 75 0.54 78 0.2 85 1.7 78
Flora of Kabardino-Balkaria 487 76 0.56 77 39.1 44 1.8 77
Astrakhan Oblast Flora 467 77 0.46 80 9.5 70 2.5 69
Magadan Oblast Flora 221 78 1.56 63 0.5 83 1.9 76
Tyva Republic Flora 205 79 0.63 75 1.2 80 1.3 83
Chechen Republic Flora 175 80 0.12 84 11.2 67 1.3 82
Flora of North Ossetia 128 81 0.18 82 16.0 64 1.2 84
Flora of Jewish Autonomous Oblast 110 82 0.69 74 3.0 75 1.6 80
Flora of Nenets Autonomous Okrug 81 83 1.85 58 0.5 84 1.5 81
Flora of Kalmykia 48 84 0.18 83 0.6 82 1.6 79
Flora of Ingushetia 32 85 0.06 85 8.8 71 1.0 85

The top 10 regional projects contribute 45.4% of observations of the entire project and this proportion is constantly decreasing due to the growth of the communities in other regions. For instance, the proportion of observations made in the top ten regions was 55.5% on 9 Jan 2020. However, the disproportion in the spatial coverage is obvious even within the leading regions (Fig. 6).

Figure 6.

Progress of the data coverage for the top three most sampled regions within the "Flora of Russia" - 9 Jan 2019 vs. 7 Sep 2020 (source: iNaturalist.org).

aMoscow Oblast, 9 Jan 2019 - 1,286 observations from 180 users  
bMoscow Oblast, 7 Sep 2020 - 72,861 observations from 1,906 users  
cCity of Moscow, 9 Jan 2019 - 1,115 observations from 181 users  
dCity of Moscow, 7 Sep 2020 - 66,124 observations from 1,596 users  
eBryansk Oblast, 9 Jan 2019 - 67 observations from 4 users  
fBryansk Oblast, 7 Sep 2020 - 34,830 observations from 175 users  

Less than 500 observations have been made within each of the four regions of the Caucasian biodiversity hotspot (Kabardino-Balkaria, Chechen Republic, North Ossetia, Ingushetia), desert regions (Astrakhan Oblast, Kalmykia), as well as in Magadan Oblast, Tyva Republic, Jewish Autonomous Oblast and Nenets Autonomous Okrug.

Observations per capita. If we normalise the number of observations per 1,000 inhabitants, it turns out that the two most active communities are in the City of Sevastopol and Kamchatka, followed by Bryansk Oblast, Kursk Oblast, Mordovia, Kostroma Oblast and, unexpectedly, Chukotka, a vast region with a very small population. In general, this index best reflects both the involvement of the local residents in the "Flora of Russia" project and the activity of this particular region's community.

Observation density. Spatial sampling is best characterised by the density of observations per a standard area (for example, per 1,000 km2). The three federal cities are far ahead: Moscow (26K observations), Sevastopol (25K) and St. Petersburg (7K), here, a large urban population is concentrated on a small area. Federal cities are followed by four regions of Central Russia with a relatively small area and active local iNaturalist communities, i.e. Moscow Oblast, Tula Oblast, Chuvashia and Bryansk Oblast.

Observations per recorded species. The number of observations per recorded species is the integrated index which best characterises both the data density and species representation. The gradual accumulation of observations leads to consequent revealing of all known species or, at least, of regularly observed plants. When recording a new species becomes a rare event and an active community still posts many new photos, the average number of observations per species begins to grow rapidly. According to this index, the leaders are Moscow Oblast (65), City of Moscow (61), Bryansk Oblast (31), Tula Oblast (29), Nizhny Novgorod Oblast (27) and Omsk Oblast (25). Regions with rich floras (for example, montainous areas) outperform the relatively-poor plains because more observations need to be made there to record numerous rare species.

Coordinates: 

41 and 82 Latitude; 19.5 and -169 Longitude.

Taxonomic coverage

Description: 

As of 7 Sep 2020, the "Flora of Russia" project included observations of 6,857 species of vascular plants (Fig. 2). Plants of the World Online (POWO) serves as a taxonomic backbone for tracheophytes on iNaturalist. There are some tools used for automatic, semi-automatic and manual addition of new taxa and modification of the taxonomic information. Reasonable deviations from POWO could be accepted on iNaturalist by the curators after community discussions. The taxonomic opinion of an observer, if necessary, may be recorded in the description section of an individual observation.

Unfortunately, Russia lacks both a modern checklist of vascular plants and a standard flora. Therefore, we could assume that the project covers ca. 55% of the Russian plant diversity out of 12,500 species estimated by Kamelin (2007). That is quite a satisfactory figure since the Russian flora includes many species which require collection and proper identification of herbarium specimens (Hieracium, Alchemilla, Crataegus, some Poaceae and Cyperaceae etc.). There are also many rare endemics in hardly accessible mountain areas and quite a few insufficiently-known species recorded from scattered localities.

The list of the most recorded species of the project includes species which are widespread, easily recognisable and identifiable during all seasons (Table 9). These are mostly perennial herbs tolerant to intensive human activity, but also some common trees. Since the observations are concentrated in European Russia (Fig. 5), top-observed species of the project perfectly match the most common plants of temperate Europe, based on frequency of occurrences in the national grid mapping projects (Seregin 2011). The five most observed species have more than 5,000 observations each.

Table 9.

The top 20 species of the "Flora of Russia" project ordered by the number of observations

Rank Species Number of observations
1 Urtica dioica 5,788
2 Achillea millefolium 5,536
3 Pinus sylvestris 5,375
4 Taraxacum aggr. officinale 5,327
5 Cirsium arvense 4,994
6 Acer negundo 4,874
7 Tanacetum vulgare 4,417
8 Artemisia vulgaris 4,404
9 Trifolium pratense 4,392
10 Tussilago farfara 4,293
11 Chelidonium majus 4,213
12 Tripleurospermum inodorum 4,183
13 Plantago major 4,184
14 Cichorium intybus 4,135
15 Chamaenerion angustifolium 4,109
16 Trifolium repens 3,797
17 Sorbus aucuparia 3,751
18 Glechoma hederacea 3,750
19 Aegopodium podagraria 3,727
20 Veronica chamaedrys 3,530

There are 1215 unique observations in the project. They include:

  • 994 species,
  • 19 nothospecies (hybrids),
  • 133 heterotypic infraspecific taxa,
  • 36 homotypic infraspecific taxa,
  • 33 genera lacking chance for finer identification.

The following users have created the greatest number of unique species and nothospecies records: R.A. Murtazaliev (195 observations), V.S. Volkotrub (81), M.M. Mallaliev (40), S.A. Nesterova (32), A.I. Pyak (32), S.R. Mayorov (31), S.A. Svirin (27), I.N. Pospelov (25), Aleksandr L. Ebel (23), D.A. Bochkov (23), D.G. Chimitov (19), M.S. Knyazev (17), A.P. Seregin (17), E.S. Kashirina (16), A.V. Popov (13), O.A. Chernyagina (13), E.A. Razina (12) and N.S. Liksakova (12). Altogether, 224 observers were lucky to contribute at least one unique observation of a species or a hybrid.

To assess the regional representation of our data, we have compiled a table on the regional diversity of the Russian flora with necessary references (Table 10). The numbers of known species across the regions are not always perfectly comparable, since the authors of regional floras, guides and checklists used various species concepts which were either "splitters" or "lumpers". The overestimate for Volgograd Oblast (Sagalaev 2008) is especially notable.

Table 10.

Number of known species across the first-level administrative units of Russia with references.

Rank Regional project Number of known species Reference
1 Dagestan Flora 3,380 Murtazaliev (2016)
2 Volgograd Oblast Flora 2,970 Sagalaev (2008), overestimate
3 Primorsky Krai Flora 2,750 Kozhevnikov and Kozhevnikova (2014)
4 Krasnodar Krai Flora 2,600 Zernov (2006)
5 Flora of the Crimea 2,573 Yena (2018)
6 Khabarovsk Krai Flora 2,516 Shlotgauer et al. (2001)
7 Flora of Kabardino-Balkaria 2,350 Shkhagapsoev (2015)
8 Flora of North Ossetia 2,306 Komzha (2000)
9 Irkutsk Oblast Flora 2,295 Chepinoga et al. (2008)
10 Chechen Republic Flora 2,295 Taysumov and Omarkhadzhieva (2012)
11 Altai Krai Flora 2,264 Silantieva (2013)
12 Stavropol Krai Flora 2,257 Ivanov (2005)
13 Krasnoyarsk Krai Flora 2,200 counts based on Krasnoborov (1988), Krasnoborov (1997), Krasnoborov and Malyshev (1988), Malyshev (1997), Malyshev and Peshkova (1987), Malyshev and Peshkova (1990), Malyshev and Peshkova (1993a), Malyshev and Peshkova (1993b), Malyshev et al. (2003), Peshkova (1996), Peshkova and Malyshev (1990), Polozhy and Malyshev (1994a), Polozhy and Malyshev (1994b), Polozhy and Peshkova (1996)
14 Buryat Republic Flora 2,161 Anenkhonov (2001)
15 Altai Republic Flora 2,136 Krasnoborov and Artemov (2012)
16 Udmurt Republic Flora 2,073 Baranova and Puzyrev (2012)
17 Tyva Republic Flora 2,066 Shaulo (2007)
18 Amur Oblast Flora 2,024 Starchenko (2008)
19 Sakhalin Oblast Flora 2,000 Eremin (2005)
20 Moscow Oblast Flora 2,000 Varlygina et al. (2008)
21 Flora of Karachay-Cherkessia 2,000 Zernov et al. (2015)
22 Flora of Adygea 2,000 Zamotailov (2012)
23 Flora of Yakutia 1,987 Kuznetsova and Zakharova (2012)
24 Rostov Oblast Flora 1,982 Fedyaeva (2014)
25 Voronezh Oblast Flora 1,954 A.V. Shcherbakov (personal communication)
26 Flora of Moscow 1,908 Shcherbakov and Lyubeznova (2018)
27 Samara Oblast Flora 1,900 Senator and Saksonov (2017)
28 Orenburg Oblast Flora 1,870 Ryabinina and Knyazev (2009); M.S. Knyazev (personal communication)
29 Sevastopol Flora 1,859 Seregin et al. (2015)
30 Flora of Khakassia 1,850 Aleksandr L. Ebel (personal communication)
31 Flora of Karelia 1,814 Kravchenko (2007)
32 Tver Oblast Flora 1,798 Notov et al. (2014)
33 Ulyanovsk Oblast Flora 1,760 Rakov et al. (2014)
34 Kemerovo Oblast Flora 1,753 Sheremetova et al. (2011)
35 Bashkortostan Flora 1,730 Naumova et al. (2011)
36 Sverdlovsk Oblast Flora 1,715 Knyazev et al. (2019)
37 Penza Oblast Flora 1,700 Vasyukov and Saksonov (2020)
38 Zabaykalsky Krai Flora 1,700 Popova (2017)
39 Chelyabinsk Oblast Flora 1,680 Kulikov (2005)
40 Belgorod Oblast Flora 1,680 N.M. Reshetnikova (personal communication)
41 Lipetsk Oblast Flora 1,669 A.V. Shcherbakov (personal communication)
42 Perm Krai Flora 1,658 Ovesnov (2007)
43 Tatarstan Flora 1,610 Bakin et al. (2000)
44 Tambov Oblast Flora 1,605 A.V. Shcherbakov (personal communication) (1478 species recorded by Sukhorukov (2010))
45 Oryol Oblast Flora 1,605 Kiseleva et al. (2012)
46 Leningrad Oblast Flora 1,600 Tzvelev (2000)
47 Chuvash Republic Flora 1,586 Gafurova (2014)
48 Kaluga Oblast Flora 1,542 Reshetnikova (2016)
49 Flora of Ingushetia 1,531 Dakieva (2003)
50 Yaroslavl Oblast Flora 1,500 estimate (previous number of species by Tikhomirov (1986) is out of date)
51 Saratov Oblast Flora 1,492 Bulany (2010)
52 Ryazan Oblast Flora 1,475 Kazakova and Shcherbakov (2017)
53 Kirov Oblast Flora 1,470 Tarasova (2007)
54 Tula Oblast Flora 1,465 A.V. Shcherbakov (personal communication)
55 Magadan Oblast Flora 1,457 Berkutenko (2010)
56 Bryansk Oblast Flora 1,451 Bulokhov et al. (2005)
57 Vologda Oblast Flora 1,450 Konechnaya and Suslova (2004)
58 Flora of Jewish Autonomous Oblast 1,443 Rubtsova (2019)
59 Kaliningrad Oblast Flora 1,436 Gubareva et al. (1999)
60 Ivanovo Oblast Flora 1,418 A.V. Shcherbakov (personal communication)
61 Kursk Oblast Flora 1,409 Poluyanov (2005)
62 Flora of Mordovia 1,401 Silaeva et al. (2010)
63 Vladimir Oblast Flora 1,399 Seregin (2014)
64 Tyumen Oblast Flora 1,395 Kuzmin (2018)
65 Novosibirsk Oblast Flora 1,379 Klescheva (2011)
66 Murmansk Oblast Flora 1,357 Konstantinova et al. (2014)
67 Smolensk Oblast Flora 1,310 Reshetnikova (2004); N.M. Reshetnikova (personal communication)
68 Kamchatka Flora 1,300 Chernyagina (2018)
69 Kurgan Oblast Flora 1,300 Bolshakov (2012)
70 Nizhny Novgorod Oblast Flora 1,290 Bakka and Kiseleva (2008)
71 Mari El Flora 1,259 Abramov (1995)
72 Astrakhan Oblast Flora 1,253 Laktionov (2009)
73 Pskov Oblast Flora 1,248 Konechnaya and Efimov (2018)
74 Flora of Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug 1,175 Nazarenko and Pasechnyuk (2019) based on monograph by Krasnoborov (2006)
75 Novgorod Oblast Flora 1,174 Yurova et al. (2009)
76 Tomsk Oblast Flora 1,170 Revushkin (2014)
77 Omsk Oblast Flora 1,161 Bekisheva (1999); A.N. Efremov (personal communication)
78 Komi Republic Flora 1,158 Taskaev (2009)
79 Kostroma Oblast Flora 1,130 Leostrin and Efimova (2018)
80 Arkhangelsk Oblast Flora 1,098 Schmidt (2005)
81 St Petersburg Flora 1,088 Budantsev and Yakovlev (2006)
82 Flora of Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug 1,073 Pismarkina (2019)
83 Flora of Kalmykia 994 Baktasheva (2012)
84 Flora of Chukotka 936 Yurtsev et al. (2010)
85 Flora of Nenets Autonomous Okrug 720 Matveeva (2006)

Table 10 gives a good overview of plant diversity across the country with notable hotspots revealed earlier by Malyschev for standard areas (Malyshev 1975, Malyshev 1992):

  1. Caucasus (Dagestan, Krasnodar Krai, Kabardino-Balkaria, North Ossetia, Chechen Republic, Stavropol Krai etc.);
  2. Russian Far East (Primorsky Krai, Khabarovsk Krai);
  3. Southern Siberia (Irkutsk Oblast, Altai Krai, part of Krasnoyarsk Krai etc.);
  4. Crimea.

Additionally, the Caucasus is listed as the only biodiversity - and especially tracheophyte diversity - hotspot of global importance in Russia (Myers et al. 2000, Barthlott et al. 2007).

We present data on the taxonomic diversity of vascular plants within the regions (Table 11) using two indexes, i.e. (1) the number of the recorded species and (2) the number of the lowest-rank taxa of the taxonomic tree with "research grade". The second index includes varieties, subspecies, species and those genera which cannot be accurately identified to species rank by uploaded photos (for instance, Alchemilla, Pilosella, Hieracium, Euphrasia and some genera requiring specific features not always captured by observers, like Melilotus and Epilobium without flowers etc.). The number of the recorded species is more suitable for the further taxonomic analysis.

Table 11.

Taxonomic diversity of the "Flora of Russia" project across regional projects (references for species known in the region are given in Table 10)

Regional project Recorded species Rank (recorded species) Recorded taxa of the lowest rank Species known in the region Proportion of recorded species Rank (proportion of recorded species)
Dagestan Flora 1,927 1 1,960 3,380 57.0 19
Flora of the Crimea 1,570 2 1,643 2,573 61.0 15
Primorsky Krai Flora 1,430 3 1,491 2,750 52.0 25
Sevastopol Flora 1,378 4 1,405 1,859 74.1 5
Krasnodar Krai Flora 1,278 5 1,302 2,600 49.2 29
Altai Krai Flora 1,161 6 1,217 2,264 51.3 27
Kursk Oblast Flora 1,153 7 1,185 1,409 81.8 1
Voronezh Oblast Flora 1,131 8 1,187 1,954 57.9 17
Moscow Oblast Flora 1,126 9 1,213 2,000 56.3 21
Bryansk Oblast Flora 1,121 10 1,214 1,451 77.3 3
Sverdlovsk Oblast Flora 1,095 11 1,146 1,715 63.8 12
Krasnoyarsk Krai Flora 1,094 12 1,131 2,200 49.7 28
Irkutsk Oblast Flora 1,089 13 1,130 2,295 47.5 31
Flora of Moscow 1,087 14 1,176 1,908 57.0 20
Tatarstan Flora 1,041 15 1,074 1,610 64.7 11
Nizhny Novgorod Oblast Flora 1,006 16 1,008 1,290 78.0 2
Bashkortostan Flora 970 17 1,014 1,730 56.1 22
Tula Oblast Flora 948 18 991 1,465 64.7 10
Novosibirsk Oblast Flora 940 19 975 1,379 68.2 6
Vladimir Oblast Flora 856 20 907 1,399 61.2 14
Kamchatka Flora 856 21 898 1,300 65.8 8
Kostroma Oblast Flora 846 22 898 1,130 74.9 4
Flora of Mordovia 845 23 844 1,401 60.3 16
Buryat Republic Flora 838 24 852 2,161 38.8 45
Chuvash Republic Flora 827 25 850 1,586 52.1 24
Yaroslavl Oblast Flora 818 26 876 1,500 54.5 23
Rostov Oblast Flora 797 27 820 1,982 40.2 42
Omsk Oblast Flora 777 28 814 1,161 66.9 7
Altai Republic Flora 777 29 802 2,136 36.4 52
Belgorod Oblast Flora 776 30 808 1,680 46.2 32
Samara Oblast Flora 769 31 795 1,900 40.5 41
Tver Oblast Flora 757 32 797 1,798 42.1 39
Sakhalin Oblast Flora 755 33 771 2,000 37.8 49
Volgograd Oblast Flora 744 34 747 2,970 25.1 67
Tomsk Oblast Flora 744 35 768 1,170 63.6 13
Amur Oblast Flora 737 36 765 2,024 36.4 51
Flora of Karachay-Cherkessia 731 37 753 2,000 36.6 50
Chelyabinsk Oblast Flora 720 38 738 1,680 42.9 37
Leningrad Oblast Flora 718 39 714 1,600 44.9 34
Arkhangelsk Oblast Flora 714 40 728 1,098 65.0 9
Perm Krai Flora 689 41 702 1,658 41.6 40
Kaliningrad Oblast Flora 685 42 714 1,436 47.7 30
Kaluga Oblast Flora 678 43 708 1,542 44.0 36
Kemerovo Oblast Flora 665 44 695 1,753 37.9 47
Kirov Oblast Flora 628 45 654 1,470 42.7 38
Tyumen Oblast Flora 625 46 642 1,395 44.8 35
St Petersburg Flora 624 47 623 1,088 57.4 18
Flora of Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug 610 48 631 1,175 51.9 26
Saratov Oblast Flora 591 49 601 1,492 39.6 43
Udmurt Republic Flora 581 50 595 2,073 28.0 62
Penza Oblast Flora 579 51 593 1,700 34.1 55
Ryazan Oblast Flora 575 52 591 1,475 39.0 44
Pskov Oblast Flora 565 53 578 1,248 45.3 33
Lipetsk Oblast Flora 554 54 568 1,669 33.2 56
Ulyanovsk Oblast Flora 503 55 516 1,760 28.6 61
Murmansk Oblast Flora 475 56 497 1,357 35.0 54
Vologda Oblast Flora 472 57 486 1,450 32.6 58
Flora of Karelia 457 58 474 1,814 25.2 66
Flora of Adygea 453 59 454 2,000 22.7 69
Ivanovo Oblast Flora 451 60 461 1,418 31.8 59
Mari El Flora 450 61 459 1,259 35.7 53
Zabaykalsky Krai Flora 449 62 455 1,700 26.4 63
Novgorod Oblast Flora 445 63 459 1,174 37.9 48
Stavropol Krai Flora 441 64 444 2,257 19.5 71
Orenburg Oblast Flora 434 65 439 1,870 23.2 68
Kurgan Oblast Flora 430 66 436 1,300 33.1 57
Flora of Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug 410 67 424 1,073 38.2 46
Flora of Khakassia 401 68 417 1,850 21.7 70
Smolensk Oblast Flora 343 69 355 1,310 26.2 64
Flora of Yakutia 303 70 305 1,987 15.2 74
Komi Republic Flora 302 71 304 1,158 26.1 65
Tambov Oblast Flora 300 72 308 1,605 18.7 72
Khabarovsk Krai Flora 299 73 301 2,516 11.9 76
Flora of Chukotka 285 74 289 936 30.4 60
Flora of Kabardino-Balkaria 268 75 271 2,350 11.4 77
Oryol Oblast Flora 258 76 255 1,605 16.1 73
Astrakhan Oblast Flora 187 77 190 1,253 14.9 75
Tyva Republic Flora 164 78 165 2,066 7.9 78
Chechen Republic Flora 140 79 140 2,295 6.1 81
Magadan Oblast Flora 114 80 114 1,457 7.8 79
Flora of North Ossetia 111 81 111 2,306 4.8 83
Flora of Jewish Autonomous Oblast 70 82 70 1,443 4.9 82
Flora of Nenets Autonomous Okrug 54 83 55 720 7.5 80
Flora of Ingushetia 31 84 31 1,531 2.0 85
Flora of Kalmykia 30 85 30 994 3.0 84

The community has observed the highest number of plant species in Dagestan (1,927 species), which is the richest region of Russia in terms of the number of known species (Table 10). However, the rich flora of Dagestan is still represented here by only 57.0% of known species (Murtazaliev 2016). It is followed by other six territories of the Russian Federation from the above mentioned plant diversity hotspots — the Caucasus (represented by Krasnodar Krai), the Crimean Peninsula (the Republic of Crimea and the City of Sevastopol), the southern part of the Russian Far East (Primorsky Krai) and the mountains of Southern Siberia (Altai Krai). Four well-represented regions of Central Russia (Kursk, Voronezh, Moscow and Bryansk Oblasts) form the next group with a good proportion of flora detection ranging from 56.3% to 81.8%.

If we consider the number of species known from each region, Kursk Oblast is the leader in terms of the proportion of observed species (81.8% out of 1,409 known species). Nizhny Novgorod Oblast, Bryansk Oblast, Kostroma Oblast and the City of Sevastopol also have over 70% of known species already represented on iNaturalist, although Nizhny Novgorod Oblast lacks a modern flora checklist, since the number of taxa for the region published by Bakka and Kiseleva (2008) is out of date.

In regional lists, 53 species are counted as the leaders of the scoreboards (Table 12). This list includes some notable invasive species like Acer negundo (a leader in five regions), Heracleum sosnowskyi (two regions), Ambrosia artemisiifolia, Erigeron annuus, Hordeum jubatum, Impatiens glandulifera, and Lupinus polyphyllus (one region each). Usually, this high performance of invasive alien species is a result of intentional recording in line with a regional assessment of aliens performed by the project members.

Table 12.

The most recorded species in the regional projects (as of 9-10 Sep 2020)

Species Number of observations in the regional project Regional project
Acer negundo 109 Tyumen Oblast Flora
Acer negundo 174 Tomsk Oblast Flora
Acer negundo 279 Altai Krai Flora
Acer negundo 399 Bryansk Oblast Flora
Acer negundo 633 Tatarstan Flora
Achillea millefolium 3 Chechen Republic Flora
Achillea millefolium 27 Penza Oblast Flora
Achillea millefolium 41 Saratov Oblast Flora
Achillea millefolium 192 Bashkortostan Flora
Achillea millefolium 265 Nizhny Novgorod Oblast Flora
Ambrosia artemisiifolia 19 Stavropol Krai Flora
Artemisia vulgaris 116 Flora of Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug
Asplenium scolopendrium 75 Krasnodar Krai Flora
Betonica macrantha 18 Flora of Adygea
Campanula patula 35 Udmurt Republic Flora
Centaurea scabiosa 60 Perm Krai Flora
Chamaenerion angustifolium 10 Flora of Yakutia
Chamaenerion angustifolium 155 Sverdlovsk Oblast Flora
Chamaenerion angustifolium 177 Leningrad Oblast Flora
Chelidonium majus 43 Tambov Oblast Flora
Cichorium intybus 19 Orenburg Oblast Flora
Cichorium intybus 34 Volgograd Oblast Flora
Cirsium arvense 162 Chelyabinsk Oblast Flora
Cornus suecica 7 Magadan Oblast Flora
Cornus suecica 80 Murmansk Oblast Flora
Cypripedium macranthos 308 Novosibirsk Oblast Flora
Dactylorhiza euxina 3 Flora of North Ossetia
Delphinium grandiflorum 19 Flora of Khakassia
Diplotaxis tenuifolia 117 Flora of the Crimea
Echium vulgare 29 Rostov Oblast Flora
Echium vulgare 166 Voronezh Oblast Flora
Erigeron annuus 11 Flora of Kabardino-Balkaria
Erythronium sibiricum 28 Kemerovo Oblast Flora
Fragaria viridis 27 Kurgan Oblast Flora
Fritillaria camschatcensis 149 Kamchatka Flora
Gentiana algida 5 Tyva Republic Flora
Gentiana septemfida 25 Flora of Karachay-Cherkessia
Heracleum sosnowskyi 312 Tver Oblast Flora
Heracleum sosnowskyi 304 Kursk Oblast Flora
Hordeum jubatum 195 Irkutsk Oblast Flora
Impatiens glandulifera 30 Primorsky Krai Flora
Juniperus deltoides 154 Sevastopol Flora
Larix gmelinii 51 Amur Oblast Flora
Larix gmelinii 44 Sakhalin Oblast Flora
Leonurus quinquelobatus 775 Moscow Oblast Flora
Lupinus polyphyllus 73 Kaliningrad Oblast Flora
Melampyrum nemorosum 74 Kaluga Oblast Flora
Orostachys spinosa 67 Altai Republic Flora
Oxytropis myriophylla 15 Zabaykalsky Krai Flora
Papaver pulvinatum 124 Krasnoyarsk Krai Flora
Phragmites australis 14 Astrakhan Oblast Flora
Picea obovata 25 Komi Republic Flora
Pinus sibirica 445 Omsk Oblast Flora
Pinus sylvestris 2 Flora of Ingushetia
Pinus sylvestris 12 Mari El Flora
Pinus sylvestris 24 Pskov Oblast Flora
Pinus sylvestris 26 Dagestan Flora
Pinus sylvestris 26 Novgorod Oblast Flora
Pinus sylvestris 31 Ivanovo Oblast Flora
Pinus sylvestris 95 Flora of Karelia
Pinus sylvestris 103 Ulyanovsk Oblast Flora
Pinus sylvestris 293 Vladimir Oblast Flora
Pinus sylvestris 293 Flora of Mordovia
Populus tremula 3 Flora of Jewish Autonomous Oblast
Rhodiola rosea 5 Flora of Nenets Autonomous Okrug
Rhodiola rosea 16 Flora of Chukotka
Rubus chamaemorus 54 Flora of Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug
Salix myrsinifolia 80 Arkhangelsk Oblast Flora
Securigera varia 66 Belgorod Oblast Flora
Spiraea salicifolia 14 Khabarovsk Krai Flora
Tanacetum vulgare 50 Lipetsk Oblast Flora
Tanacetum vulgare 122 Kostroma Oblast Flora
Taraxacum aggr. officinale 122 Samara Oblast Flora
Taraxacum aggr. officinale 169 St Petersburg Flora
Taraxacum aggr. officinale 1,064 Flora of Moscow
Trifolium repens 11 Oryol Oblast Flora
Tulipa suaveolens 7 Flora of Kalmykia
Tussilago farfara 86 Ryazan Oblast Flora
Urtica dioica 28 Vologda Oblast Flora
Urtica dioica 187 Yaroslavl Oblast Flora
Urtica dioica 204 Chuvash Republic Flora
Urtica dioica 223 Tula Oblast Flora
Vaccinium vitis-idaea 24 Buryat Republic Flora
Vaccinium vitis-idaea 59 Kirov Oblast Flora
Veronica chamaedrys 13 Smolensk Oblast Flora

Conifers, which could be observed during the whole year, provide another example of the most observed species across regions. For instance, Pinus sylvestris is a top species in ten regions as well as Larix gmelinii (two regions), Picea obovata, Pinus sibirica and Juniperus deltoides (one region).

Other examples include common plants of meadows and urban lawns (e.g. Achillea millefolium, Taraxacum aggr. officinale, Tanacetum vulgare, Artemisia vulgaris, Cirsium arvense, Cichorium intybus), common tundra plants in Arctic regions (Cornus suecica, Papaver pulvinatum, Rubus chamaemorus), species abundant in the taiga zone (Vaccinium vitis-idaea, Chamaenerion angustifolium) or common plants of dry grasslands (Tulipa suaveolens, Fragaria viridis, Cichorium intybus). There are exceptional cases of over-recording of orchids (Cypripedium macranthos, Dactylorhiza euxina).

Temporal coverage

Notes: 

Uploading date

The project started on 9 Jan 2019 with 11,000 "research-grade" observations of the Russian flora. As of 8 Sep 2020, observations uploaded to iNaturalist in 2018 and earlier, account for only 1.4% of all the project data (Table 13). The number of observations uploaded in the eight months of 2020 exceeds threefold the data uploaded in 2019. The backlog of unidentified observations from 2019 is much smaller than the proportion of unprocessed records made in 2020.

Table 13.

Observations of vascular plants of Russia by the year of uploading (as of 7 Sep 2020)

Year "Research grade" observations Needs ID observations All verifiable observations "Research grade" (%) Needs ID (%) All verifiable (%)
2018 and before 10,841 607 11,448 1.4 0.4 1.3
2019 212,662 19,075 231,737 28.3 14.0 26.1
2020 527,713 116,862 644,575 70.2 85.6 72.6
TOTAL 751,216 136,544 887,760 100.0 100.0

100.0

Observation date

Many participants of the "Flora of Russia" project hold large photo archives and continue to post them on iNaturalist retrospectively. Therefore, at least 14.9% of the observations were made before 31 Dec 2018 (Table 14). Since the project requires a photo of the organism, the most important limiting factor of the temporal coverage is the time of spreading of digital cameras. Apparently, their appearance in Russia, judging by the data, is dated 2002-2003. Amongst the earlier observations, there are both scanned photographs and transparencies, as well as later photographs of preserved specimens.

Table 14.

Observations of vascular plants of Russia ordered by the year of record (as of 7 Sep 2020)

Year "Research grade" observations Needs ID observations All verifiable observations "Research grade" (%) Needs ID (%) All verifiable (%)
2001 and before 642 110 752 0.0 0.0 0.0
2002 341 24 365 0.0 0.0 0.0
2003 662 52 714 0.1 0.0 0.1
2004 1,011 96 1,107 0.1 0.1 0.1
2005 2,146 161 2,307 0.3 0.1 0.3
2006 2,570 199 2,769 0.3 0.1 0.3
2007 4,625 528 5,153 0.6 0.4 0.6
2008 5,803 451 6,254 0.8 0.3 0.7
2009 5,637 548 6,185 0.8 0.4 0.7
2010 7,967 1,603 9,570 1.1 1.2 1.1
2011 6,029 600 6,629 0.8 0.4 0.7
2012 7,059 793 7,852 0.9 0.6 0.9
2013 8,262 875 9,137 1.1 0.6 1.0
2014 6,371 649 7,020 0.8 0.5 0.8
2015 9,576 822 10,398 1.3 0.6 1.2
2016 11,404 1,008 12,412 1.5 0.7 1.4
2017 13,622 1,101 14,723 1.8 0.8 1.7
2018 18,490 2,028 20,518 2.5 1.5 2.3
2019 173,247 17,496 190,743 23.1 12.8 21.5
2020 465,752 107,400 573,152 62.0 78.7 64.6
TOTAL 751,216 136,544 887,760 100.0 100.0 100.0

We have analysed the data on the basis of dates of observation for 2019 (21.5% of all data on plants in Russia) and the eight months of 2020 from January to August (64.6%). Two graphs given below have the same scale bar.

In 2019, the most productive days were the first two days of the Team Cup final, when its participants made 3,027 (11 Aug 2019) and 2,602 (10 Aug 2019) observations of vascular plants (Fig. 7). This was mainly caused by the fact that we organised the final as a bioblitz, while in the early stages, it was possible to upload archived photos. However, the 2019 Cup overall did not attract much interest amongst the participants. For example, the third richest day by the number of observations was 17 Jun 2019, on which 2,514 observations of vascular plants were made, including 555 observations from the field trip of Lomonosov Moscow State University students to Voronezh Oblast.

Figure 7.  

Verifiable observations from Russia on iNaturalist made in 2019 - tracheophytes (green) and all other groups (brown). A major event which contributed to data collection was the Russian Team Cup on photodocumentation of wild plants 2019 (from 1/32 to final).

In 2020, on the contrary, all the six stages of the Cup are clearly visible as prominent peaks of observation numbers. Namely, on 30 May 2020, 10,780 observations of vascular plants were made during 1/8 of the Cup (16 teams) and during the first and second days of the semi-finals 10,724 and 10,734 observations were made by four regional teams (Fig. 8). From the 1/8 of the Cup onwards, the rounds were held in the format of a three-day bioblitz from Saturday to Monday.

Figure 8.  

Verifiable observations from Russia on iNaturalist in 2020 - tracheophytes (green) and all other groups (brown). Major events contributed to data collection include the City Nature Challenge 2020 (CNC), the Russian Team Cup on photodocumentation of wild plants 2020 (from 1/32 to final) and the International Biodiversity Championship 2020 (IBC).

International competitions like the City Nature Challenge (CNC) and the International Biodiversity Championship (IBC) did not generate peak user interest across Russia in 2020. However, both events also made a significant contribution to our data, since they lasted four days each. During the four CNC days (24-27 Apr 2020), 20,965 observations of vascular plants were made and 20,429 observations were recorded during the four IBC days (3-6 Aug 2020). We actively promoted both events amongst the participants of the "Flora of Russia" project.

It is worth mentioning that the COVID-19 restrictions of the spring of 2020 caused, for example, a low level of participation in CNC, which was made up for in the summer by off-campus student practices and events for high school students which all used iNaturalist this year.

Summing up, all Russian projects on student practices over the three summer months of 2020 (the common time for them in Russia) shows that 54,186 "research grade" observations by more than 750 observers meet the requirements of the "Flora of Russia" project. This makes a modest 17.4% contribution to the summer observations of the project. In 2020, practices in the form of independent work of students supervised remotely by teachers were held in fourteen Russian universities: Moscow State University, Bashkir State University, Irkutsk State University, State University of Nizhny Novgorod, Voronezh State University, Ural Federal University, Mordovia State University, Kazan Federal University, Tver State University, Kirov State University, Pushchino State Institute of Natural Science, Ivanovo State University and Tomsk State University.

Another notable income of the summer data flow was the Herbarium 2.0 project, organised by Valentina Borodulina. Being initially designed for high school students, it attracted the attention of schoolteachers and teachers of out-of-school education. Of the 44,087 observations of this project (1 Jun - 31 Aug 2020), 36,307 observations were made in Russia and reached "research-grade". This contributes to 11.0% of our summer data and the most active observers involved in the project rapidly became notable participants of the "Flora of Russia" project.

Usage licence

Usage licence: 
Other

Data resources

Data package title: 
Flora of Russia on iNaturalist backup 8 Sep 2020 (750K + 136K records)
Resource link: 
http://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.4061848, "Flora of Russia" backup (Zenodo), a stable snapshot of the dataset performed at 9 Sep 2020.
Alternative identifiers: 
Other endpoints for the same stable snapshot of the dataset performed at 9 Sep 2020: https://zenodo.org/record/4061848#.X3afWe1n1PZ, "Flora of Russia" backup (alternative Zenodo identifier); https://doi.org/10.15468/ab3s5x, alternative identifier of complete iNaturalist dataset in GBIF; https://doi.org/10.13140/RG.2.2.17886.87362/1, "Flora of Russia" backup (Research Gate); https://www.researchgate.net/publication/344174058_Flora_of_Russia_on_iNaturalist_backup_2020_Sep_08_750K_136K_records, alternative Research Gate identifier. Links to updated dynamic resources: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/export?projects=flora-of-russia, permanently updated csv-export of the "Flora of Russia" data (link to iNaturalist export tool); http://www.inaturalist.org/observations/gbif-observations-dwca.zip, complete iNaturalist dataset in GBIF (Ueda 2020); https://www.gbif.org/dataset/50c9509d-22c7-4a22-a47d-8c48425ef4a7, alternative identifier of complete iNaturalist dataset in GBIF.
Number of data sets: 
1
Data set name: 
Flora of Russia on iNaturalist backup 8 Sep 2020 (750K + 136K records)
Data format: 
xlsx
Description: 

"Flora of Russia" on iNaturalist backup for 8 Sep 2020 (886K records in total - 750K confirmed photo observations on 6,857 species and additional 136K unverified photo observations). Contains metadata only and hyperlinks to photos in csv format. The backup was exported from iNaturalist.org using the "Export Observations" tool. We are using 27 columns for further processing out of 66 available columns, since the whole iNaturalist dataset in long-tailed.

We amended the dataset on 25 Sep 2020 after a data audit performed by Dr Robert Mesibov (https://www.datafix.com.au) in line with preparation of the data paper. All records with positional accuracy exceeding 50,000 m were marked as having inaccurate location and reported to users. Altogether, we excluded 1,106 observations from the project’s data and 587 observations from the backlog from the backup on this ground.

The “research-grade” observations with free licences (CC0, CC-BY and CC-BY-NC) are fully available in GBIF within “iNaturalist Research-grade Observations” occurrence dataset (https://doi.org/10.15468/ab3s5x). We added the last column "gbif_id" to all csv files of our dataset with URLs of GBIF records using GBIF Occurrence Download https://doi.org/10.15468/dl.msfxkn performed on 28 Sep 2020.

Five amended csv-files with 750,143 observations from the project “Flora of Russia” (“research-grade” records) and 136,023 observations the project’s backlog (“needs-id” records) represent the stable project backup (https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.4061848).

The following abbreviations are used in column descriptions:

  • A - automatically generated data (usually from exif files of photos);
  • M - manually inserted data;
  • AM - both options are possible (automatically generated data which could be manually edited).
Column label Column description
id Unique identifier for the observation (A)
observed_on_string Date/time as entered by the observer (AM)
observed_on Normalised date of observation (A)
time_observed_at Normalised date/time of observation (A)
time_zone Time zone of observation (AM)
user_id Unique identifier for the observer (A)
user_login Username of the observer (A)
created_at Date/time observation was created (A)
updated_at Date/time observation was last updated (A)
quality_grade Quality grade of this observation; "research grade" only for the "Flora of Russia" project and "needs ID" only for the project's backlog (A)
licence Licence the observer has chosen for the media file supporting this observation (AM)
url URL for the observation (A)
image_url URL for the default image (A)
oauth_application_id Which application was used to post the observation (A)
latitude Publicly visible latitude (AM)
longitude Publicly visible longitude (AM)
positional_accuracy Accuracy estimate in metres (AM)
private_latitude Private latitude, set if observation private or obscured (AM)
private_longitude Private longitude, set if observation private or obscured (AM)
private_positional_accuracy Coordinate precision, set if observation private or obscured (AM)
geoprivacy Whether or not the observer has chosen to obscure or hide the coordinates (AM)
taxon_geoprivacy Most conservative geoprivacy applied due to the conservation statuses of taxa in current identification (A)
coordinates_obscured Whether or not the coordinates have been obscured, either because of geoprivacy or because of a threatened taxon (A)
positioning_device Device used to determine coordinates (A)
positioning_method How coordinates were determined (A)
scientific_name Scientific name of the observed taxon according to iNaturalist taxonomic backbone (AM)
taxon_id Unique identifier for the observed taxon (A)
gbif_id URL for the corresponding GBIF record (A)

Additional information

Community Coverage

Number of observers. The project reached a milestone of 10,000 observers with at least a single "research grade" observation 7 Sep 2020.

The maximum number of observers is concentrated in the largest cities of Russia and their metropolitan areas - Moscow with Moscow Oblast and St. Petersburg with Leningrad Oblast (Table 15), followed by Krasnodar Krai and the Crimea, two resort regions on the Black Sea coast, which attract millions of tourists. Large communities have also formed in other major cities of Russia, for example, Nizhny Novgorod and Ekaterinburg (Sverdlovsk Oblast). Despite the geographic proximity of Moscow Oblast and the City of Moscow, they have two different communities, which overlap only by 33.4%. A similar situation is observed in St. Petersburg and Sevastopol. The communities of observers in St. Petersburg and Leningrad Oblast overlap by 37.0%, whereas in the Crimea and Sevastopol by 32.0%.

Table 15.

Community of the "Flora of Russia" project across regional projects

Regional project Obser-vers Rank (obser-vers) Regi-onal project mem-bers Rank (regi-onal project mem-bers) Obser-vers per 1M capita Rank (per 1M capita) Obser-vers per 1,000 km2 Rank (obser-vers per 1,000 km2) Obser-vations per obser-ver Rank (obser-vations per obser-ver)
Moscow Oblast Flora 1,910 1 88 2 251 9 43.1 4 38.4 41
Flora of Moscow 1,623 2 122 1 129 25 633.7 1 40.8 38
St Petersburg Flora 677 3 20 21 126 26 482.5 2 13.5 71
Leningrad Oblast Flora 642 4 23 17 347 4 7.7 11 15.4 69
Krasnodar Krai Flora 508 5 42 7 90 37 6.7 12 16.8 66
Flora of the Crimea 428 6 59 4 224 12 16.4 5 38.7 39
Nizhny Novgorod Oblast Flora 366 7 21 20 114 31 4.8 19 72.9 16
Sverdlovsk Oblast Flora 345 8 41 10 80 40 1.8 34 53.9 31
Tula Oblast Flora 333 9 64 3 225 11 13.0 6 82.5 14
Irkutsk Oblast Flora 313 10 19 23 131 24 0.4 65 62.8 25
Novosibirsk Oblast Flora 304 11 45 5 109 32 1.7 36 75.4 15
Bashkortostan Flora 302 12 19 22 75 44 2.1 31 53.1 32
Tver Oblast Flora 290 13 25 15 228 10 3.4 24 33.1 46
Tatarstan Flora 276 14 22 19 71 48 4.1 22 64.2 22
Kaluga Oblast Flora 260 15 25 14 258 8 8.7 9 28.5 52
Voronezh Oblast Flora 240 16 16 32 103 33 4.6 20 72.5 17
Vladimir Oblast Flora 234 17 30 12 171 14 8.0 10 62.1 26
Altai Krai Flora 226 18 41 9 97 35 1.3 45 94.2 11
Chelyabinsk Oblast Flora 215 19 24 16 62 55 2.4 30 47.5 35
Flora of Karelia 211 20 11 52 341 5 1.2 47 16.7 67
Sevastopol Flora 199 21 41 8 449 2 230.3 3 110.5 9
Bryansk Oblast Flora 175 22 44 6 146 20 5.0 15 199.5 4
Yaroslavl Oblast Flora 175 23 14 39 139 22 4.8 16 86.2 13
Samara Oblast Flora 170 24 22 18 53 58 3.2 26 50.1 34
Kaliningrad Oblast Flora 163 25 12 47 163 16 10.8 7 47.2 36
Altai Republic Flora 153 26 16 31 699 1 1.6 39 23.3 61
Murmansk Oblast Flora 142 27 15 34 190 13 1.0 52 23.7 60
Krasnoyarsk Krai Flora 140 28 16 30 49 63 0.1 82 60.0 27
Primorsky Krai Flora 138 29 14 38 73 45 0.8 56 56.5 29
Ryazan Oblast Flora 129 30 15 33 116 30 3.3 25 25.7 55
Flora of Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug 126 31 18 25 76 43 0.2 71 63.7 23
Flora of Mordovia 125 32 17 27 157 17 4.8 18 133.2 7
Buryat Republic Flora 121 33 16 29 123 27 0.3 68 30.1 51
Kamchatka Flora 117 34 36 11 372 3 0.3 70 119.4 8
Rostov Oblast Flora 117 35 10 57 28 81 1.2 48 25.0 59
Chuvash Republic Flora 115 36 25 13 94 36 6.3 13 160.9 5
Perm Krai Flora 114 37 16 28 44 67 0.7 57 51.2 33
Stavropol Krai Flora 110 38 8 68 39 72 1.7 38 10.4 79
Volgograd Oblast Flora 107 39 12 46 43 68 0.9 53 32.8 47
Ivanovo Oblast Flora 103 40 10 56 103 34 4.8 17 20.7 63
Kemerovo Oblast Flora 101 41 13 42 38 74 1.1 49 32.7 48
Belgorod Oblast Flora 97 42 18 24 63 54 3.6 23 64.6 21
Pskov Oblast Flora 96 43 9 62 152 19 1.7 35 25.0 58
Novgorod Oblast Flora 87 44 9 61 145 21 1.6 40 21.1 62
Saratov Oblast Flora 87 45 13 41 36 77 0.9 55 38.6 40
Tomsk Oblast Flora 87 46 14 37 81 39 0.3 69 66.2 20
Arkhangelsk Oblast Flora 78 47 8 67 71 47 0.2 73 36.2 43
Flora of Karachay-Cherkessia 77 48 6 74 165 15 5.4 14 34.3 44
Kursk Oblast Flora 77 49 12 45 70 51 2.6 29 342.1 2
Kirov Oblast Flora 75 50 13 40 59 56 0.6 60 70.4 18
Lipetsk Oblast Flora 74 51 4 83 65 52 3.1 28 41.7 37
Flora of Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug 71 52 17 26 131 23 0.1 77 27.4 54
Flora of Adygea 70 53 10 55 154 18 9.0 8 13.8 70
Tyumen Oblast Flora 69 54 9 60 45 65 0.4 63 101.5 10
Smolensk Oblast Flora 67 55 6 73 71 46 1.3 44 12.8 74
Orenburg Oblast Flora 65 56 8 66 33 79 0.5 62 18.1 65
Penza Oblast Flora 64 57 12 44 49 64 1.5 42 32.3 49
Udmurt Republic Flora 64 58 8 65 42 69 1.5 41 62.9 24
Komi Republic Flora 63 59 3 84 76 42 0.2 75 11.7 76
Ulyanovsk Oblast Flora 63 60 11 51 51 60 1.7 37 38.3 42
Vologda Oblast Flora 58 61 11 49 50 62 0.4 66 33.5 45
Sakhalin Oblast Flora 58 62 11 50 118 29 0.7 59 55.1 30
Kostroma Oblast Flora 57 63 14 36 89 38 0.9 54 223.3 3
Flora of Kabardino-Balkaria 56 64 7 70 65 53 4.5 21 8.7 81
Dagestan Flora 52 65 9 59 17 83 1.0 51 145.9 6
Oryol Oblast Flora 52 66 4 82 70 50 2.1 32 11.0 78
Astrakhan Oblast Flora 51 67 10 54 50 61 1.0 50 9.2 80
Omsk Oblast Flora 51 68 14 35 26 82 0.4 67 387.2 1
Mari El Flora 48 69 7 69 71 49 2.1 33 25.1 57
Khabarovsk Krai Flora 48 70 6 72 36 75 0.1 81 12.7 75
Tambov Oblast Flora 42 71 5 78 41 71 1.2 46 25.5 56
Flora of Khakassia 41 72 11 48 76 41 0.7 58 27.7 53
Flora of Yakutia 41 73 10 53 42 70 0.0 85 12.8 73
Zabaykalsky Krai Flora 33 74 8 64 31 80 0.1 79 31.0 50
Amur Oblast Flora 30 75 9 58 38 73 0.1 78 86.7 12
Kurgan Oblast Flora 29 76 12 43 35 78 0.4 64 67.9 19
Flora of North Ossetia 25 77 5 77 36 76 3.1 27 5.1 84
Tyva Republic Flora 18 78 6 71 55 57 0.1 76 11.4 77
Magadan Oblast Flora 17 79 5 76 120 28 0.0 83 13.0 72
Flora of Chukotka 16 80 8 63 322 6 0.0 84 58.0 28
Flora of Kalmykia 14 81 2 85 51 59 0.2 74 3.4 85
Flora of Nenets Autonomous Okrug 12 82 4 81 274 7 0.1 80 6.8 82
Chechen Republic Flora 9 83 4 80 6 85 0.6 61 19.4 64
Flora of Jewish Autonomous Oblast 7 84 4 79 44 66 0.2 72 15.7 68
Flora of Ingushetia 5 85 5 75 10 84 1.4 43 6.4 83

Number of members (subscribers) of regional projects. The largest regional community of formal members is in the City of Moscow (122 participants) and Moscow Oblast (88 participants). Membership in a regional project allows a member to follow news and to affiliate their observations with a specific region on the observation page. More than 40 participants joined the projects of Tula Oblast, Crimea, Novosibirsk Oblast, Bryansk Oblast, Krasnodar Krai, Sevastopol, Altai Krai and Sverdlovsk Oblast. In Kamchatka, 30.8% of observers are subscribers to the regional project, while in St. Petersburg, on the contrary, only 3.0% have subscribed to the regional project. The number of subscribers is a result of an active curation of the regional project journal.

Number of observers per 1M capita. The number of observers per 1M of the regional population shows how actively the local residents are involved in the work of the "Flora of Russia" project. However, a top list, with a few exceptions, includes regions with a small population and sites specifically noteworthy for naturalists. Due to tourist activity, a relatively high number of observers has been noted in Altai Republic, Kamchatka, Leningrad Oblast, Karelia, Chukotka, Nenets Autonomous Okrug and Kaluga Oblast. Communities mostly formed by local residents include Sevastopol, Moscow Oblast and Tver Oblast.

Number of observers per 1,000 km2. This index helps assess areas with a high density of observers. The federal cities of Moscow, St. Petersburg and Sevastopol are undoubtedly in the lead here (200-700 observers per 1,000 km2). This number is reduced to 43 observers in Moscow Oblast, followed by the Crimea (16), Tula Oblast (13) and Kaliningrad Oblast (11).

Productivity (number of observations per observer). This index clearly demonstrates the regions with a fairly modest community, where data are received mainly from a few of the most active participants ("mega-observers") (Table 16). Such active individuals greatly helped Omsk Oblast, Kursk Oblast, Kostroma Oblast, Bryansk Oblast, Chuvashia, Dagestan, Mordovia, Kamchatka, Sevastopol and Tyumen Oblast to rise high in the index.

Table 16.

Top observers of the regional projects (a - author, c - contributor)

Regional project Top observer (observations)

Number of observa- tions

Top observer (species) Number of species
Flora of Moscow A.P. Seregin (apseregin), a 14,900 A.P. Seregin (apseregin), a 791
Bryansk Oblast Flora N.N. Panasenko (panasenkonn), c 13,348 N.N. Panasenko (panasenkonn), c 1,010
Kursk Oblast Flora N.I. Degtyarev (dni_catipo), a 10,966 N.I. Degtyarev (dni_catipo), a 841
Chuvash Republic Flora S.M. Appolonov (velibortravoved), c 10,676 S.M. Appolonov (velibortravoved), c 577
Omsk Oblast Flora V.I. Teplouhov (vladimir_teplouhov), a 9,894 V.I. Teplouhov (vladimir_teplouhov), a 492
Sevastopol Flora E.S. Kashirina (katerina_kashirina), a 8,830 S.A. Svirin (sapsan), a 1,050
Yaroslavl Oblast Flora E.V. Garin (eduard_garin), a 6,351 E.V. Garin (eduard_garin), a 669
Altai Krai Flora P.V. Golyakov (pavel_golyakov), a 6,285 P.V. Golyakov (pavel_golyakov), a 829
Moscow Oblast Flora N.V. Ivanova (dryomys) 6,235 V.Y. Arkhipov (vladimirarkhipov), a 561
Krasnoyarsk Krai Flora I.N. Pospelov (taimyr), a 5,608 I.N. Pospelov (taimyr), a 659
Kaliningrad Oblast Flora N.P. Zelenova (npz), a 5,539 N.P. Zelenova (npz), a 543
Kamchatka Flora O.P. Kuryakova (olga2019kuryakova), a 5,154 B.V. Bolshakov (borisbolshakov), a 553
Tatarstan Flora V.E. Prokhorov (vadim_prokhorov), a 5,001 V.E. Prokhorov (vadim_prokhorov), a 822
Nizhny Novgorod Oblast Flora T.V. Zarubo (tatyanazarubo), a 4,573 T.V. Zarubo (tatyanazarubo), a 591
Kostroma Oblast Flora S.A. Nesterova (ledum), a 4,385 S.A. Nesterova (ledum), a 719
Novosibirsk Oblast Flora A.P. Zyrianov (alzov), a 4,268 K.V. Romanov (kildor), a 566
Irkutsk Oblast Flora S.V. Mirvoda (smsergey), a 4,222 A.V. Verkhozina (allaverkhozina), a 627
Chelyabinsk Oblast Flora Y.O. Magazov (yaroslavmagazov), a 4,027 Y.O. Magazov (yaroslavmagazov), a 387
Voronezh Oblast Flora A.N. Khimin (aleks-khimin), a 3,782 A.N. Khimin (aleks-khimin), a 626
Tomsk Oblast Flora A.L. Ebel (aleksandrebel), a 3,579 A.L. Ebel (aleksandrebel), a 643
Dagestan Flora M.M. Mallaliev (mallaliev), a 3,508 R.A. Murtazaliev (ramazan_murtazaliev), a 1,594
Samara Oblast Flora D.V. Tretyakova (divitre), a 3,424 D.V. Tretyakova (divitre), a 469
Tyumen Oblast Flora Y.M. Basov (yurii_basov), a 3,384 Y.M. Basov (yurii_basov), a 469
Flora of Mordovia A.A. Khapugin (hapugin88), a 3,322 A.A. Khapugin (hapugin88), a 536
Sverdlovsk Oblast Flora D.V. Nesterkova (dinanesterkova), a 3,151 M.S. Knjazev (mihail13), a 661
Primorsky Krai Flora V.S. Volkotrub (vvolkotrub), c 3,052 V.S. Volkotrub (vvolkotrub), c 1,238
Bashkortostan Flora E. Ishmukhametova (evelina_ishmukhametova) 2,952 E. Ishmukhametova (evelina_ishmukhametova) 467
Belgorod Oblast Flora V.N. Zelenkova (sesquicentennial), a 2,784 V.N. Zelenkova (sesquicentennial), a 645
Flora of the Crimea E.A. Razina (lenatara) 2,648 E.A. Razina (lenatara) 983
Flora of Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug N.V. Filippova (ninacourlee), a 2,579 N.V. Filippova (ninacourlee), a 352
Vladimir Oblast Flora V.V. Stepanov (vist), a 2,357 A.P. Seregin (apseregin), a 609
Sakhalin Oblast Flora S.A. Nesterova (ledum), a 2,094 S.A. Nesterova (ledum), a 574
Saratov Oblast Flora A.N. Kandaurova (cava), a 1,964 A.N. Kandaurova (cava), a 483
Perm Krai Flora M.E. Trubinova (mashat), c 1,843 I.V. Pavlov (pavloviv), a 337
Leningrad Oblast Flora M.I. Ismaylov (maxim_ismaylov), c 1,667 A. Kondratieva (alina_kondratieva) 407
Kirov Oblast Flora V. Bryukhov (woodmen19), c 1,624 V. Bryukhov (woodmen19), c 450
St Petersburg Flora M.I. Ismaylov (maxim_ismaylov), c 1,552 A. Kondratieva (alina_kondratieva) 359
Buryat Republic Flora D.G. Chimitov (daba), a 1,547 D.G. Chimitov (daba), a 506
Kaluga Oblast Flora A.A. Malyutkin (sansan_94) 1,429 N.V. Ivanova (dryomys) 335
Flora of Karachay-Cherkessia D.A. Bochkov (convallaria1128), a 1,362 D.A. Bochkov (convallaria1128), a 599
Arkhangelsk Oblast Flora G. Okatov (gen_ok) 1,314 G. Okatov (gen_ok) 660
Rostov Oblast Flora S.R. Mayorov (phlomis_2019), a 1,301 S.R. Mayorov (phlomis_2019), a 510
Tula Oblast Flora T.Y. Svetasheva (tsvetasheva), a 1,294 T.Y. Svetasheva (tsvetasheva), a 529
Tver Oblast Flora E.S. Pushay (pushai), a 1,108 A.P. Seregin (apseregin), a 370
Amur Oblast Flora A.P. Seregin (apseregin), a 1,052 S.A. Nesterova (ledum), a 367
Udmurt Republic Flora S. Seleznev (sergejseleznev) 1,006 S. Seleznev (sergejseleznev) 367
Kemerovo Oblast Flora E.E. Perfilev (gyng), c 970 E.E. Perfilev (gyng), c 410
Ryazan Oblast Flora P.Y. Likhacheva (polinalikhacheva), c 948 P.Y. Likhacheva (polinalikhacheva), c 267
Kurgan Oblast Flora Y.M. Basov (yurii_basov), a 936 Y.M. Basov (yurii_basov), a 250
Ulyanovsk Oblast Flora A.V. Korobkov (korobkov) 777 R. Anashkina (rimma_anashkina) 333
Vologda Oblast Flora D.A. Filippov (dmitriy_philippov), c 754 D.A. Filippov (dmitriy_philippov), c 279
Krasnodar Krai Flora A.P. Seregin (apseregin), a 712 Y.V. Danilevsky (yuriydanilevsky), a 339
Pskov Oblast Flora E.S. Popov (epopov), a 641 E.S. Popov (epopov), a 386
Flora of Karelia anonymous (plrays) 626 anonymous (plrays) 234
Lipetsk Oblast Flora S.Y. Korovaicev (mrsalento), c 617 A.P. Seregin (apseregin), a 355
Murmansk Oblast Flora D.A. Bochkov (convallaria1128), a 593 D.A. Bochkov (convallaria1128), a 242
Penza Oblast Flora D. Polikanin (zemleved) 576 D. Polikanin (zemleved) 345
Volgograd Oblast Flora A.P. Seregin (apseregin), a 555 A.P. Seregin (apseregin), a 334
Mari El Flora V.A. Bakutov (vladimirbakutov), a 553 V.A. Bakutov (vladimirbakutov), a 359
Tambov Oblast Flora E. Yarova (hln_m_t) 524 E. Yarova (hln_m_t) 196
Flora of Chukotka I.N. Pospelov (taimyr), a 469 I.N. Pospelov (taimyr), a 159
Altai Republic Flora N.V. Filippova (ninacourlee), a 430 K.V. Romanov (kildor), a 170
Flora of Khakassia A.L. Ebel (aleksandrebel), a 353 A.L. Ebel (aleksandrebel), a 209
Ivanovo Oblast Flora anonymous (olia27) 309 E. Voinova (ekaterinavoinova) 205
Novgorod Oblast Flora N. Zouieva (nat_zouieva) 302 A. Nikanorova (feanaro) 166
Zabaykalsky Krai Flora D.G. Chimitov (daba), a 281 D.G. Chimitov (daba), a 165
Flora of Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug I.N. Pospelov (taimyr), a 252 I.N. Pospelov (taimyr), a 136
Stavropol Krai Flora M.A. Orlov (naturalist16000), c 237 M.A. Orlov (naturalist16000), c 140
Astrakhan Oblast Flora A. Golovchenko (alena_golovchenko) 224 A. Golovchenko (alena_golovchenko) 93
Flora of Adygea E. Shaw (ed_shaw) 163 E. Shaw (ed_shaw) 110
Komi Republic Flora E. Shubnitsina (elena_sh) 156 E. Shubnitsina (elena_sh) 89
Flora of Yakutia C. Rixen (christianrixen) 134 C. Rixen (christianrixen) 106
Flora of Kabardino-Balkaria M.P. Shashkov (max_carabus) 134 M.P. Shashkov (max_carabus) 70
Orenburg Oblast Flora V.P. Travkin (vladimirtravkin), a 131 V.P. Travkin (vladimirtravkin), a 87
Smolensk Oblast Flora D. Kulakova (daria_kulakova) 124 D. Kulakova (daria_kulakova) 112
Oryol Oblast Flora M. Frolenkova (frolenkovamar) 108 M. Frolenkova (frolenkovamar) 66
Tyva Republic Flora A.I. Pyak (pyakai), a 100 A.I. Pyak (pyakai), a 95
Khabarovsk Krai Flora A. Sukhinina (sukhinina-a) 86 V.A. Belova (veronika_belova), a 65
Flora of Jewish Autonomous Oblast V.A. Belova (veronika_belova), a 62 V.A. Belova (veronika_belova), a 51
Chechen Republic Flora T.A. Avtaeva (tomaavtaeva) 60 T.A. Avtaeva (tomaavtaeva) 56
Magadan Oblast Flora I.N. Pospelov (taimyr), a 42 E. Yusupova (ekaterina_yusupova) 36
Flora of Nenets Autonomous Okrug D.G. Ivanov (ivanovdg19), c 32 D.G. Ivanov (ivanovdg19), c 25
Flora of North Ossetia V.N. Korotkov (vladimir_korotkov), a 23 V.N. Korotkov (vladimir_korotkov), a 22
Flora of Ingushetia R.A. Murtazaliev (ramazan_murtazaliev), a 19 R.A. Murtazaliev (ramazan_murtazaliev), a 19
Flora of Kalmykia V.E. Prokhorov (vadim_prokhorov), a 12 V.E. Prokhorov (vadim_prokhorov), a 11

Data Usage

The project's data were cited in a number of research papers dealing with documentation and verification of new regional records (Prokopenko et al. 2019; Verkhozina et al. 2019; Leostrin and Efimova 2020; Seregin 2020b; Verkhozina et al. 2019Verkhozina et al. 2020).

Other examples of dataset usage include papers on distribution of noteworthy alien plants (Mayorov et al. 2020; Zarubo and Mayorov 2020), floristic inventories of protected areas (Seregin 2020a) and phenology of plants during the extremely warm winter of 2019/2020 (Vinogradov 2020).

Several papers on orchids of Russia employed our data to a various extent since this showy group attracts special attention of the observers (Efimov and Legchenko 2020; Efimov 2020; Popovich et al. 2020).

Acknowledgements

More than 10K people and about 4K identifiers have participated in the data collection and curation within this dataset. We would like to thank other active observers and identifiers from iNaturalist: afid, alchemillist, alexander_baransky, alina_kondratieva, almantas, arslan_tatamov, bobwardell, dakileno, davydovbotany, dryomys, evelina_ishmukhametova, evgeniy_benikhanov, fedor_kondrachuk, frontova, fylatra, fyodorkhomenko, gen_ok, ggularijants, hln_m_t, igor_olshanskyi, kai_schablewski, karavan-altay, kemper, korobkov, kosienkov_konstantin, laukines_pievos, lenatara, lilia_rakitianskaia, margosha, mariendistel, marina-privalova, max_carabus, mitchella_1, mobbini, natalya1406, naturalist19164, naturalist25051, naturalist31744, naturalist7664, nellysemenova, ocanire, olegdavydov, pavel_yevseyenkov, plrays, polemoniaceae, ppllaannttss_, roman_romanov, roman-evseev, sansan_94, schneider414, sergejseleznev, sergii_kudlaenko, sergilus, skuch, snsergeevna, sokolkov2002, stepangrebnev2005, stephen54, thilokrueger, tiggrx, tmaximo, trichocereus, ulrichs, valeria_reshetnikova, vikaryabkova, viktoria, viktoriaf, vikula_bludov, v-lad, waldemarzeja, wojciech, wojtest, wolfgangb, yayemaster, yriysokolov73, zdekanovkov and zemleved. This list includes (1) members of the project who decided to be neither contributors nor co-authors of the data paper (or left a proposal unanswered); (2) schoolchildren; (3) naturalists who either did not join or left our community. Their contribution and expertise are highly appreciated.

Funding

State assignments: AAAA-A16-116021660039-1 for Lomonosov Moscow State University (S.V. Dudov, K.V. Dudova, N.S. Gamova & A.P. Seregin), AAAA-A17-117011810036-3 for Institute of General and Experimental Biology, SB RAS (D.G. Chimitov), AAAA-A17-117050400146-5 for Institute of the Problems of Northern Development, Tyumen Scientific Centre SB RAS (V.A. Glazunov), AAAA-A18-118012690099-2 for Papanin Institute for Biology of Inland Waters, RAS (E.V. Garin), АААА-А18-118021490070-5 for Institute of North Industrial Ecology Problems, Kola Science Centre RAS (E.A. Borovichev), AAAA-A18-118022090078-2 (E.S. Popov) & AAAA-A19-119031290052-1 (A.V. Leostrin) for Komarov Botanical Institute, RAS, AAAA-A18-118052590019-7 for Center for Forest Ecology and Productivity, RAS (E.V. Tikhonova), AAAA-A19-119020890099-4 for Mountain Botanical Garden, Dagestan Federal Research Centre RAS (M.M. Mallaliev), AAAA-A19-119051390034-4 for Tula State Lev Tolstoy Pedagogical University (T.Y. Svetasheva), AAAA-A20-120031890003-3 for Institute of Cytology & Genetics, SB RAS (O.E. Kosterin), АААА-А20-120021490040-3 for Tyumen State University (A.A. Khapugin, I.V. Kuzmin).

Grants from Russian Foundation for Basic Research: 20-35-70066 (S.A. Lednev), 19-04-00799 (T.M. Gavrilova), 19-04-00658 & 19-29-05205 (R.A. Murtazaliev), 20-04-00544 (M.I. Khomutovskiy), 19-04-00370 (J.V. Shner), 18-44-860017 (N.V. Filippova), 19-54-53014 (S.V. Dudov), 18-44-030025 & 19-54-53015 (D.G. Chimitov), 19-44-710002 (T.Y. Svetasheva & A.P. Seregin), 19-34-70018 (S.V. Dudov, K.V. Dudova & A.P. Seregin), 20-44-420007 (A.L. Ebel & A.P. Seregin), 19-44-233012 (E.G. Kashirina, N.S. Gamova, S.V. Dudov & A.P. Seregin), 20-45-380009 (V.A. Belova), 20-416-380004 (N.V. Dorofeev).

Other grants: 20-67-46018 (A.I. Pyak) & 19-77-00025 (M.N. Kozhin) from Russian Science Foundation; grant 075-15-2020-787 in the form of a subsidy for a Major project in priority areas from the Ministry of Science and Higher Education of Russia (A.V. Verkhozina); grant 37/2020-P from Russian Geographic Society (R.A. Murtazaliev); grant 13-01-20/39 from the Yugra State University for the development of scientific schools (N.V. Filippova); grant "Providing Equipment for Digitizing Herbarium Collection of UUH and Materials for further Processing Plant Specimens" from the International Association of Plant Taxonomy (D.G. Chimitov).

Author contributions

Each co-author of the paper simultaneously fulfilled three criteria being (1) a top-500 observer with 180+ observations, (2) a top-200 identifier with 320+ identifications and (3) a formal member (a subscriber) of the "Flora of Russia" project on iNaturalist as of 8 Sep 2020. The following contribution was made by the authors:

  • A - checking data quality (flagging cultivated plants, inspecting metadata of photos, checking copyright, monitoring the accuracy of georeferencing, giving advice to newcomers etc.);
  • B - identification of someone's observations;
  • C - confirmation someone's observations;
  • D - promotion of iNaturalist (media and social networks, work with students and schoolchildren, organising bioblitzes etc.);
  • E - curation of the regional projects of "Flora of Russia";
  • F - active management of another project, the content of which overlaps (partially or entirely) with the "Flora of Russia" project;
  • G - field inspection of interesting observations of other users.

Details of contribution of the authors (in alphabetic order):

  • V.Y. Arkhipov (vladimirarkhipov) - ABCDG and field work mainly in Moscow Oblast;
  • V.A. Bakutov (vladimirbakutov) - B and field work mainly in Mari El Republic;
  • Y.M. Basov (yurii_basov) - ABC and field work mainly in Tyumen Oblast;
  • V.A. Belova (veronika_belova) - ABCG and field work mainly in Irkutsk Oblast;
  • E.A. Belyakov (evgeniib) - BCFG and field work mainly in Yaroslavl Oblast;
  • O.V. Biryukova (beerolha) - ABCDEG and field work mainly in Nizhny Novgorod Oblast;
  • D.A. Bochkov (convallaria1128) - ABCG and field work mainly in City of Moscow;
  • S.A. Bogdanovich (svetlana-bogdanovich) - ABCDG and field work mainly in Crimea;
  • B.V. Bolshakov (borisbolshakov) - ABCDG and field work mainly in Kamchatka Krai;
  • V.P. Borodulina (valentinaborodulina) - ABCDF and field work mainly in Moscow Oblast;
  • E.A. Borovichev (borovicheveugene) - BCDG and field work mainly in Murmansk Oblast;
  • U.V. Bury (vlbury) - BCD and field work mainly in Kamchatka Krai;
  • O.A. Chernyagina (olga_chernyagina) - ABCDEFG and field work mainly in Kamchatka Krai;
  • D.G. Chimitov (daba) - BCDG and field work mainly in Buryatia;
  • Y.V. Danilevsky (yuriydanilevsky) - ABC and field work mainly in Krasnodar Krai;
  • A.V. Danilin (danilinav) - AB and field work mainly in Moscow Oblast;
  • N.I. Degtyarev (dni_catipo) - ABCDFG and field work mainly in Kursk Oblast;
  • O.V. Deineko (lex_deineko) - C and field work mainly in Kursk Oblast;
  • N.V. Dorofeev (nikolaydorofeev) - BCG and field work mainly in Irkutsk Oblast;
  • A.V. Dubynin (alexanderdubynin) - ABCDEFG and field work mainly in Novosibirsk Oblast;
  • S.V. Dudov (svdudov) - ABC and field work mainly in Karachay-Cherkessia;
  • K.V. Dudova (antennaria) - ABDG and field work mainly in Vladimir Oblast;
  • Alexei L. Ebel (alexeiebel) - ACDF and field work mainly in Altai Krai;
  • Aleksandr L. Ebel (aleksandrebel) - BCFG and field work mainly in Tomsk Oblast;
  • A.N. Efremov (andreyefremov) - BCG and field work mainly in Amur Oblast;
  • D.V. Epikhin (epikhin) - ABC and field work mainly in Crimea;
  • Y.A. Fedorova (jules_f) - ABC and field work mainly in Bashkortostan;
  • I.V. Filippov (bolotoved) - ABC and field work mainly in Khanty Mansi Autonomous Okrug;
  • N.V. Filippova (ninacourlee) - ABCDEFG and field work mainly in Khanty Mansi Autonomous Okrug;
  • N.S. Gamova (natalia_gamova) - ABC and field work mainly in Buryatia;
  • E.V. Garin (eduard_garin) - ABCDFG and field work mainly in Yaroslavl Oblast;
  • T.M. Gavrilova (justcorpse) - ABCD and field work mainly in City of Moscow;
  • S.V. Gerasimov (svg52) - BCDG and field work mainly in Bashkortostan;
  • V.A. Glazunov (vaglazunov) - ABCG and field work mainly in Tyumen Oblast;
  • P.V. Golyakov (pavel_golyakov) - ABCDG and field work mainly in Altai Krai;
  • M.S. Gorbunova (melodi_96) - ABCDEF and field work mainly in Moscow Oblast;
  • V.V. Gostev (v199rus) - ABCD and field work mainly in Moscow Oblast;
  • A.N. Kandaurova (cava) - BC and field work mainly in Saratov Oblast;
  • T.A. Karpenko (tatiana_karpenko) - BCDFG and field work mainly in Sevastopol;
  • E.S. Kashirina (katerina_kashirina) - ABCDEG and field work mainly in Sevastopol;
  • A.A. Khapugin (hapugin88) - ABCDEFG and field work mainly in Mordovia;
  • A.N. Khimin (aleks-khimin) - BCDFG and field work mainly in Voronezh Oblast;
  • M.I. Khomutovskiy (khomax) - BCG and field work mainly in Karachay-Cherkessia;
  • M.S. Knjazev (mihail13) - BC and field work mainly in Sverdlovsk Oblast;
  • I.A. Kobuzeva (naturalist12789) - BC and field work mainly in City of Moscow;
  • V.N. Korotkov (vladimir_korotkov) - ABC and field work mainly in City of Moscow;
  • G.L. Kosenkov (gennadiy) - CG and field work mainly in Pskov Oblast;
  • O.E. Kosterin (oleg_kosterin) - BCDG and field work mainly in Novosibirsk Oblast;
  • M.N. Kozhin (mkozhin) - ABCDFG and field work mainly in Murmansk Oblast;
  • M.V. Kozlova (mitrula_paludosa) - ABCG and field work mainly in City of Moscow;
  • M.M. Krivosheev (krivosheev) - BCDG and field work mainly in Bashkortostan;
  • E.V. Kropocheva (naturalist6941) - BCF and field work mainly in Krasnodar Krai;
  • O.P. Kuryakova (olga2019kuryakova) - ABC and field work mainly in Kamchatka Krai;
  • S.B. Kutueva (svetlanakutueva) - BCD and field work mainly in Yaroslavl Oblast;
  • D.V. Kuzmenckin (kuzmenckin) - BCDG and field work mainly in Altai Krai;
  • I.V. Kuzmin (igor_kuzmin) - ABCE and field work mainly in Tyumen Oblast;
  • A.V. Lebedev (alebedev) - ABCDG and field work mainly in Kostroma Oblast;
  • S.A. Lednev (madmanserg) - ABCD and field work mainly in Moscow Oblast;
  • A.V. Leostrin (art_leostrin) - BC and field work mainly in Kostroma Oblast;
  • D.F. Lyskov (dmitrylyskov) - BC and field work mainly in City of Moscow;
  • Y.O. Magazov (yaroslavmagazov) - ABCDEF and field work mainly in Chelyabinsk Oblast;
  • M.M. Mallaliev (mallaliev) - ABCG and field work mainly in Dagestan;
  • K.Y. Marchenkova (kiramarch) - BC and field work mainly in Bryansk Oblast;
  • S.R. Mayorov (phlomis_2019) - ABCDG and field work mainly in Rostov Oblast;
  • S.V. Mirvoda (smsergey) - BCE and field work mainly in Irkutsk Oblast;
  • I.Y. Mitjushina (zefirka) - ABCF and field work mainly in Vladimir Oblast;
  • A.E. Mitroshenkova (naturalist38499) - BCDG and field work mainly in Samara Oblast;
  • R.A. Murtazaliev (ramazan_murtazaliev) - ABC and field work mainly in Dagestan;
  • D.V. Nesterkova (dinanesterkova) - ABCEG and field work mainly in Sverdlovsk Oblast;
  • S.A. Nesterova (ledum) - ABCE and field work mainly in Kostroma Oblast;
  • R.M. Osmanov (ru_osmanov) - CG and field work mainly in Dagestan;
  • I.V. Pavlov (pavloviv) - BC and field work mainly in Perm Krai;
  • S.V. Ponomarenko (serguei_ponomarenko) - ABC and field work mainly in Moscow Oblast;
  • E.S. Popov (epopov) - BC and field work mainly in Pskov Oblast;
  • L.S. Poryadin (leoporyadin) - CG and field work mainly in Moscow Oblast;
  • I.N. Pospelov (taimyr) - ABCG and field work mainly in Krasnoyarsk Krai;
  • V.E. Prokhorov (vadim_prokhorov) - ABCDFG and field work mainly in Tatarstan;
  • S.V. Prokopenko (sergeyprokopenko) - BC and field work mainly in Primorsky Krai;
  • E.S. Pushay (pushai) - ABCDEFG and field work mainly in Tver Oblast;
  • A.I. Pyak (pyakai) - BCG and field work mainly in Altai Republic;
  • K.V. Romanov (kildor) - ABCDEG and field work mainly in Novosibirsk Oblast;
  • D.B. Safina (dinasafina) - CG and field work mainly in Crimea;
  • E.S. Samarin (brodaga59) - AC and field work mainly in Bashkortostan;
  • K.V. Samodurov (konstantinsamodurov) - BC and field work mainly in Tomsk Oblast;
  • S.A. Senator (stsenator) - ABCDG and field work mainly in Samara Oblast;
  • A.P. Seregin (apseregin) - ABCDE and field work mainly in City of Moscow;
  • D.S. Shilov (denis_shilov) - ABCD and field work mainly in Sverdlovsk Oblast;
  • J.V. Shner (julia_shner) - ABCG and field work mainly in City of Moscow;
  • E.A. Shumikhina (eashumikhina) - ABC and field work mainly in Tyumen Oblast;
  • T.B. Silaeva (tbsilaeva) - BC and field work mainly in Mordovia;
  • E.A. Sklyar (ev_sklyar) - ACDE and field work mainly in Kursk Oblast;
  • V.V. Stepanov (vist) - ABCDEFG and field work mainly in Vladimir Oblast;
  • T.L. Strus (naturalist10224) - BCDF and field work mainly in Khanty Mansi Autonomous Okrug;
  • R.R. Sultanov (sultanov-rinat) - BCG and field work mainly in Novosibirsk Oblast;
  • T.Y. Svetasheva (tsvetasheva) - ABCDG and field work mainly in Tula Oblast;
  • S.A. Svirin (sapsan) - BCG and field work mainly in Sevastopol;
  • V.I. Teplouhov (vladimir_teplouhov) - BC and field work mainly in Omsk Oblast;
  • E.V. Tikhonova (elena_tikhonova) - BC and field work mainly in City of Moscow;
  • D.V. Tishin (denis_tishin) - BCDEFG and field work mainly in Tatarstan;
  • V.P. Travkin (vladimirtravkin) - ABCEF and field work mainly in Samara Oblast;
  • D.V. Tretyakova (divitre) - ABCD and field work mainly in Samara Oblast;
  • A.V. Verkhozina (allaverkhozina) - ABCDEFG and field work mainly in Irkutsk Oblast;
  • G.M. Vinogradov (prokhozhyj) - ABCD and field work mainly in City of Moscow;
  • D.R. Vladimirov (vladimirov) - ABCDEFG and field work mainly in Voronezh Oblast;
  • A.A. Yakovlev (birdchuvahia) - CDEF and field work mainly in Chuvash Republic;
  • D.A. Yumagulov (domir) - B and field work mainly in Bashkortostan;
  • V.P. Zakharov (forestru) - CDF and field work mainly in Moscow Oblast;
  • T.V. Zarubo (tatyanazarubo) - ABCG and field work mainly in Nizhny Novgorod Oblast;
  • V.N. Zelenkova (sesquicentennial) - ABCDEFG and field work mainly in Belgorod Oblast;
  • N.P. Zelenova (npz) - ABC and field work mainly in Kaliningrad Oblast;
  • I.B. Zolotukhina (zibzap) - BC and field work mainly in Kursk Oblast;
  • A.P. Zyrianov (alzov) - ABCDG and field work mainly in Novosibirsk Oblast.

A.P. Seregin compiled the dataset and edited it after the data audit. The earlier version of the manuscript was written by A.P. Seregin with great assistance from O.V. Biryukova (tables, layout), K.V. Dudova (references), Aleksandr L. Ebel (tables, references), A.N. Efremov (references), E.V. Garin (tables), E.S. Kashirina (graphs), A.A. Khapugin (text), O.E. Kosterin (text), S.V. Ponomarenko (text), G.M. Vinogradov (text, references) and V.N. Zelenkova (tables). All authors contributed to the discussion to a various extent. After numerous comments, suggestions and improvements, D.A. Bochkov finally edited the text.

Other active identifiers and observers who formally confirmed their participation in the project for this data paper are acknowledged here as contributors (in alphabetic order):

  • T.I. Abazova (tanniii66) - BCD and field work mainly in Sverdlovsk Oblast;
  • A.Y. Afonin (disertinsky) - ABCD and field work mainly in Bryansk Oblast;
  • V.I. Ainikeeva (valiaainikeeva) - FG and field work mainly in Voronezh Oblast;
  • D.C. Albach, Germany (albach) - ABCD;
  • S.A. Antipov (rucfavin) - CG and field work mainly in Vladimir Oblast;
  • S.M. Appolonov (velibortravoved) - BCD and field work mainly in Chuvash Republic;
  • S.K. Bakey, Belarus (leschij) - BC;
  • S.V. Bevza (sergeybevza) - ABC and field work mainly in Kirov Oblast;
  • E.I. Boginsky (evgenyboginsky) - BCDFG and field work mainly in Altai Krai;
  • V.V. Bryukhov (woodmen19) - field work mainly in Kirov Oblast;
  • V.V. Chepinoga (victorchepinoga) - ABCF and field work mainly in Irkutsk Oblast;
  • S.A. Cherepushkin (s_chere) - BC and field work mainly in City of Moscow;
  • V.A. Chistyakova (vera_chistyakova) - C and field work mainly in Kostroma Oblast;
  • G. Dugied, France (mercantour) - ABCD;
  • A.A. Efimova (anna_efimova) - C and field work mainly in Kostroma Oblast;
  • D.G. Elin (deniselin) - D and field work mainly in Sverdlovsk Oblast;
  • M. Esfahanian, United States (mali4622) - BCD;
  • N.B. Fadeev (nicolayfadeev) - BC;
  • E.S. Fedascheva (fedascheva) - G and field work mainly in Mordovia;
  • P.J. Flood, Netherlands (padraicflood) - ABC;
  • J.F. Gange, United States (arethusa) - BC;
  • N.A. Glushenkova (naturalist8307) - D and field work mainly in Chuvash Republic;
  • O.Y. Goncharova (goncholgaj) - D and field work mainly in Kaluga Oblast;
  • J.R. Grant, Switzerland (jasonrgrant) - ABCD;
  • A.Y. Grigoryevskaya (a mentor of vladimirov) - field work mainly in Voronezh Oblast;
  • J.M. Grindeland, Norway (jmgrinde) - BCD;
  • E. Gruber, Austria (erwin_pteridophilos) - ABC;
  • N.Y. Grudanov (nikolay_grudanov) - ABCD and field work mainly in Sverdlovsk Oblast;
  • P. Hacker, Austria (pastabaum) - ABC;
  • L. Hill, United Kingdom (laurence) - AB;
  • C.A. Hoess, United States (choess) - BC;
  • M.I. Ismaylov (maxim_ismaylov) - G and field work mainly in Leningrad Oblast;
  • D.P. Ivanov (denis138) - ABC and field work mainly in Tatarstan;
  • D.G. Ivanov (ivanovdg19) - DFG and field work mainly in Tver Oblast;
  • L.V. Ivanova (millione) - field work mainly in Chuvash Republic;
  • K.S. Ivlev (ikskyrskobl) - ABG and field work mainly in Kursk Oblast;
  • V.A. Johansson, Sweden (veronika_johansson) - BD;
  • T.V. Kalugina (tatyaya) - CDF and field work mainly in Kursk Oblast;
  • S.A. Katana (svetlana_katana) - DG and field work mainly in Sverdlovsk Oblast;
  • Y.V. Kazantseva (yulia_kazantseva) - ADG and field work mainly in Tula Oblast;
  • J.J. Kinnunen, Finland (juhakinnunen) - ABC;
  • T.D. Kolesnikova (tatyana_kolesnikova) - FG and field work mainly in Novosibirsk Oblast;
  • S.Y. Korovacev (mrsalento) - G and field work mainly in Lipetsk Oblast;
  • S.V. Krilov (sergeyus) - BC and field work mainly in Yaroslavl Oblast;
  • P.V. Kudrin (pvk) - D and field work mainly in Kursk Oblast;
  • M.A. Kushunina (naturalist7019) - BC and field work mainly in City of Moscow;
  • R.A. Kutushev (radik_kutushev) - DF and field work mainly in Tatarstan;
  • A.S. Kutuzova (nastay_kutuzova) - A and field work mainly in Tatarstan;
  • A.F. Lakomov (alexanderlakomov) - C and field work mainly in Tula Oblast;
  • A.A. Lapin (a-lapin) - D and field work mainly in City of Moscow;
  • V. Lazzeri, Italy (blue_celery) - ABCD;
  • P.J. Likhacheva (polinalikhacheva) - ACDF and field work mainly in Ryazan Oblast;
  • N.S. Liksakova (nliks) - B and field work mainly in Orenburg Oblast;
  • A.I. Lukinyh (ana_lu) - G and field work mainly in Krasnodar Krai;
  • I.E. Lyaskovskaya (cambala) - G and field work mainly in Sevastopol;
  • L.N. Magazova (maglove) - DG and field work mainly in Chelyabinsk Oblast;
  • I.V. Matershev (merlu) - BFG and field work mainly in Moscow Oblast;
  • J.A. Mattila, Finland (jaakkomattila) - ABC;
  • A.E. Maximenko (rsn_max) - B and field work mainly in Lipetsk Oblast;
  • S.M. Mechanda, Canada (subaya) - B;
  • J.S. Medvedko (julia_medvedko) - DG and field work mainly in Bryansk Oblast;
  • A.A. Merkulova (anastasiiamerkulova) - G and field work mainly in City of Moscow;
  • M.S. Minullina (naturalist35399) - D and field work mainly in Sverdlovsk Oblast;
  • A.S. Mostovaja (ankhen) - C and field work mainly in City of Moscow;
  • T.S. Norton, United States (tsn) - ABC;
  • T.G. Nurhajdarova (siburhan) - ADG and field work mainly in Novosibirsk Oblast;
  • R.N. Nurkhanov, Kazakhstan (kastani) - ABC;
  • M.A. Orlov (naturalist16000) - CDG and field work mainly in Crimea;
  • N.N. Panasenko (panasenkonn) - ABCDEG and field work mainly in Bryansk Oblast;
  • B.S. Parris, New Zealand (barbaraparris) - BC;
  • E.W. Paterikina (naturalist29626paterikina) - DG and field work mainly in Voronezh Oblast;
  • E.E. Perfilev (gyng) - CG and field work mainly in Kemerovo Oblast;
  • J.A. Petrova (wrrite) - field work mainly in Irkutsk Oblast;
  • D.A. Philippov (dmitriy_philippov) - BC and field work mainly in Vologda Oblast;
  • W. Plieninger, Germany (enkidoo) - BC;
  • A.V. Poluyanov (alex_pol_64) - CDG and field work mainly in Kursk Oblast;
  • T.V. Popova (tatyanapopova) - D and field work mainly in Novosibirsk Oblast;
  • Y.A. Postnikov (yu_postnikov) - ABC and field work mainly in Tver Oblast;
  • H.E. Putschoegl, Austria (elenor) - BC;
  • L.M. Rasran, Austria (lrasran) - ABCD;
  • T.G. Repina (naturalist9429) - C and field work mainly in Primorsky Krai;
  • O.V. Ryzhkov (rovzap) - BC and field work mainly in Kursk Oblast;
  • I. Saltini, Italy (lvdt) - ABC;
  • L.N. Saplitskaya (naturalist24318) - B;
  • N. Sauberer, Austria (brothernorbert) - BC;
  • I.A. Savinov (ivan_savinov) - BCDG and field work mainly in Tver Oblast;
  • J.C. Sedbrook, United States (jcsedbrook) - C;
  • K.V. Seliverstov (konstantinseliverstov) - DG and field work mainly in Udmurt Republic;
  • I.Y. Selyutina (inessa_naturalist) - BG and field work mainly in Novosibirsk Oblast;
  • T.V. Shrayner (tatyana-omck) - field work mainly in Omsk Oblast;
  • L.Y. Smirnova (lola73) - C and field work mainly in Altai Krai;
  • N.V. Stepantsova (nadia_stepantsova) - BC;
  • A.L. Stukalova (naturalist26231) - ACDFG and field work mainly in Volgograd Oblast;
  • M.V. Sudareva (marinavs) - BCDG and field work mainly in Novosibirsk Oblast;
  • I.S. Sukhov (aquacielo) - ABCD and field work mainly in Novosibirsk Oblast;
  • T. Sukhova (tatianasukhova) - BC;
  • D.V. Sukhova (dariasukhova) - BC and field work mainly in Moscow Oblast;
  • D.V. Tarasov (tarasov) - ABCDG and field work mainly in Irkutsk Oblast;
  • I.N. Tislenko (tivanik) - BC and field work mainly in Saint Petersburg;
  • T.Y. Tretyakova (tatiana_moscow) - BC and field work mainly in City of Moscow;
  • M.E. Trubinova (mashat) - G and field work mainly in Perm Krai;
  • J. Tuomola, Finland (juhatuomola) - BC;
  • V.M. Vasjukov (vvasjukov) - B and field work mainly in Penza Oblast;
  • A.V. Vedrova (annave) - C and field work mainly in Krasnoyarsk Krai;
  • A.-M. Veith, Germany (annemirdl) - ABC;
  • U.N. Vinokurov (urij777) - B and field work mainly in Bryansk Oblast;
  • A.S. Vlasenko (andrewins) - CD and field work mainly in City of Moscow;
  • V.S. Volkotrub (vvolkotrub) - ABCG and field work mainly in Primorsky Krai;
  • E.A. Votinceva (elena-votinceva) - C and field work mainly in Kirov Oblast;
  • R. Walkowiak, Poland (radekwalkowiak) - ABCD;
  • J. Weiß, Germany (fahrenheit_66) - BC;
  • B.L. Wilson, United States (sedgequeen) - BC;
  • V.E. Yusupov (tomegatherion) - DEFG and field work mainly in Nizhny Novgorod Oblast;
  • E.V. Zakharov (eugenezakharov) - field work mainly in Yaroslavl Oblast.

References