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iNaturalist Challenge Ideas

Although this years CNC is no longer a Competition, we all love a challenge!

Here are some ways to challenge your own abilities to observe and document the world around you.

Become a Calvert Steward volunteer and your participation counts towards volunteer hours!


Washington DC City Nature Challenge:

#StayatHome Challenge:

  • "Observe" means to add a photo or sound recording  to your iNaturalist account.
  • Use iNaturalist to document all life: plants, animals, fungi, and any other biota. 
  • Try not to include domestic animals, cultivated/garden plants, or humans (or at least mark them as "captive/cultivated")
  • Observations made between April 24-27 will automatically become part of the Challenge.
  • Join the Challenge to be listed on the Leader Board. 
  • Share your photos on social media with the hastags #StayatHome #CNC2020 and if it's found in Calvert County #CalvertNaturally

Some ideas for iNaturalist Observations
  1. On Friday, April 24, start as early as you can (the event starts at 12:01 am) and make your first observation of the CNC.
  2. Observe life found inside your house (not a pet, houseplant or human).  Consider joining the Project "Never Home Alone" to share your observations. 
  3. Observe the details of a tree. Include at least 3 of these features on your Observation: Leaf, Flower, Seed, Twig, Trunk, Bark, Habitat/Landscape. 
  4. Observe an insect on a flower
  5. Complete the Insect Bingo Challenge. Download the Bingo Card and the ID Cards
  6. Mark out a 3' square in your yard. Make as many different observations as you can of things found in your square.
  7. Observe a rainbow of flowers! Make at least one observation of each color (Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Violet, White)
  8. If you have an Android devise, use the "Record Sound" to observe a bird or insect sound.

We know COVID-19 is affecting many of our CNC participants, some much more than others. After much thinking, we have decided to keep the Global CNC event scheduled for April 24-27 (observations) and April 28-May 3 (identifications). Calvert County is part of the City Nature Challenge of the Washington DC region. However, we will be making some significant modifications:

This year’s City Nature Challenge is no longer a competition. We want to embrace the collaborative aspect of the CNC this year and the healing power of nature to allow people to document their local biodiversity in whatever way they can.

During the weekend of April 24-27, 2020  individuals and groups will be on the hunt for animals, plants, mushrooms, and other life forms. These observations will be documented on iNaturalist and counted towards our region's tally. As a participant, it is up to you how much or how little you take part! Do only what feels safe for you & your family and is in accordance with all your local regulations.

Download the iNaturalist app and create a free account.


iNaturalist 101 - Exploring Biodiversity at Home (April 9th)

Upcoming Zoom  webinars:

Exploring Nature with Kids: Virtual Learning with iNaturalist & Seek (Train the Trainer, for Teachers, Parents, Youth Leaders) from April 16, 2020.

How to Take Quality Photos for iNaturalist
Thursday, April 23
7:30 – 9:00 p.m. EST
Registration link:

Calvert County Observations

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