Connect with Nature!

One of the world’s most popular nature apps, iNaturalist helps you identify the plants and animals around you. Get connected with a community of over a million scientists and naturalists who can help you learn more about nature! What’s more, by recording and sharing your observations, you’ll create research quality data for scientists working to better understand and protect nature. iNaturalist is a joint initiative by the California Academy of Sciences and the National Geographic Society.

That's the vision behind iNaturalist. So if you like recording your findings from the outdoors, or if you just like learning about life, join us!

A Little History...

iNaturalist.org began as the Master's final project of Ken-ichi Ueda, Nate Agrin, and Jessica Kline at UC Berkeley's School of Information in 2008. Nate and Ken-ichi continued working on the site after graduation, with some additional help from Sean McGregor. Ken-ichi began collaborating with Scott Loarie in 2011, when they organized as iNaturalist, LLC and began expanding the site through numerous collaborations. In 2014 iNaturalist became an initiative of the California Academy of Sciences and a joint initiative with National Geographic Society in 2017. Internationally, iNaturalist is supported by several different organizations through the iNaturalist Network.

A Whole Lot of Thanks

iNat wouldn't be possible without all the members of our amazing community, so huge thanks to anyone who's ever added an observation, made an identification, or even signed up (er, maybe not the spambots). You're all awesome. We're also extraordinarily thankful to all our site curators, who manage our taxonomy and try to keep iNat a fun, civil place to hang out. And let's not forget all the volunteers at Crowdin and Translatewiki who translate our site and apps into numerous languages, providing a critical service as we try to build communities beyond the English-speaking regions where we started. We wouldn't be able to make iNaturalist without many, many wonderful open-source projects, open datasets, and public APIs, so if you've ever written code or filed a bug for an open-source project, thank you. And last but certainly not least, thanks to all the funders who have supported us over the years. Those of us on staff feel both privileged and grateful to make a living working on iNat, so many thanks to anyone who's ever donated to us.


Yaron Budowski

Software Engineer

Yaron is a freelance developer based in Israel. He has been leading development of the iNaturalist Android app since 2013.

Johannes Klein

Software Engineer

Johannes is a React Native developer. He has a PhD in botany and spent the last seven years in software development. He is passionate about providing interfaces that connect people to nature or enable biological research. During after-work hours he keeps OpeRadar up-to-date with information about operas worldwide, or spends his time outside foraging and gardening.

Jean-Paul Boerekamps and Laurens Gomes

2030 Vision Facilitators

Jean-Paul Boerekamps is a business consultant, naturalist guide, and iNaturalist enthusiast. Laurens Gomes was formerly a World Wildlife Fund country director (Suriname and Guyana) and currently serves as a strategic advisor to environmental non-profits. Since early 2021, Jean-Paul and Laurens have been helping the iNaturalist staff better articulate a 2030 vision for iNaturalist by facilitating discussions about goals and sustainability models.

Bobby McCabe

Intern (June - September 2019)

Bobby McCabe interned with iNaturalist while an undergraduate biology student from Ursinus College. With a lifelong interest in animals, he was first introduced to iNaturalist in 2017 and he has been hooked ever since. For his internship, he helped the team refine and streamline taxonomic matters.


Ken-ichi Ueda

Co-founder, Co-director

Ken-ichi is an avid naturalist with a background in both biology and software development, having worked as a wildlife technician, GIS developer, and web developer for a variety of organizations, including UC Berkeley and Goodreads.com. Ken-ichi developed iNaturalist while pursuing a Masters degree at the UC Berkeley School of Information in 2008. These days he tries to figure out what the title "co-director" actually means.

Scott Loarie


Scott has BS & MS degrees in biology from Stanford and a PhD in environmental science from Duke. Before working on iNaturalist full time, Scott was a research fellow at the Global Ecology Dept. at the Carnegie Instit. for Science and a lecturer in the Dept. Geography at UC Berkeley with research focusing on global biodiversity loss from African elephants to the California flora. Since 2011, Scott has been directing organizational development at iNat.

Patrick Leary

Software / DevOps Engineer

Patrick is a software developer from Woods Hole, Massachusetts. He started working in 2001 as a developer and database administrator for the uBio project at the Marine Biological Laboratory. Patrick continued work on uBio while receiving his Computer Science degree from Skidmore College. In 2007 Patrick become one of the first developers working on the Encyclopedia of Life, where he remained as a Lead Developer until joining iNaturalist in 2014.

Alex Shepard

Software Engineer

Alex is a software developer and an artist. He has a BA in History from the University of Washington and an MFA in Printmaking from the San Francisco Art Institute. Alex's MFA coursework involved making video games, 3d prints, and interactive objects. Prior to joining iNaturalist in the fall of 2014, Alex led iOS development at Eyefi.

Tony Iwane

Community and Support Coordinator

Born and raised in Hawaii, Tony now lives in Oakland, California and is an experienced interpretive naturalist, photographer, and counselor. He has been helping out with iNat's outreach, support, and community management since 2015. When not at work, he enjoys looking for but rarely finding reptiles and amphibians.

Carrie Seltzer

Stakeholder Engagement Strategist

Carrie joined the iNaturalist team in February 2018 to help with organizational collaborations and fundraising. She has a PhD in Ecology and worked for National Geographic and the National Science Foundation before joining iNaturalist. She lives in Washington, DC.

Amanda Bullington

Software Engineer

Amanda is a software developer who enjoys balancing her desire to be outdoors with her passion for building consumer-friendly products. She previously worked in communications for tech companies NerdWallet and Ripple, as well as the U.S. Department of State. When not working, Amanda loves photographing San Francisco’s local coyotes.

Abhas Misraraj


Abhas is a product designer whose passion lies at the intersection of wildlife and technology. He has a BA in Integrative Biology from UC Berkeley, where he focused on the ecology and natural history of terrestrial vertebrates. Before iNaturalist, Abhas worked as a wildlife biologist at an environmental consulting company and as a product designer for startups in San Francisco.

Angie Ta

Software Engineer

Angie is a software developer in the San Francisco Bay Area, though she originally hails from Florida. Moved by an ethics class she took in university and her love of aquatics, she aims to create software that helps connect people to nature. When not working, Angie enjoys learning a new recipe.

Sylvain Morin

Software / DevOps Engineer

Sylvain started software engineering in the mid 2000s in the financial tech sector, but transitioned to biodiversity work at GBIF France in 2019. He joined iNat in 2023 to help scale and maintain our server infrastructure.

Former Staff

Joelle Belmonte

Designer (2015-2018)

Joelle joined the team in Spring of 2015 and focused on making iNaturalist more usable by a general audience, but her work improved many different parts of iNat, from our mobile apps to observations search to our taxon pages.

Revised on January 28, 2023 12:24 AM by kueda kueda