Since 2021-07-14, an alert system concerning iNaturalist neobiota observations from Luxembourg has been operational. Paul Braun, digital curator at the Luxembourg National Museum of Natural History, has implemented a Python code executed every day at 12:00 CET (= 13:00 local time) which sends an email alert message to key persons in charge of neobiota early detection and surveillance in Luxembourg. Independently from their quality grade, all observations since the day before 00:00 CET until the current day 12:00 CET are compiled and sent to , and thereafter dispatched to a selection of key persons. We chose 12:00 CET to enable a rapid response in case of observations of important species occur on the current morning. Unfortunately, the iNaturalist API does not give the option to choose precise periods for data extraction, which results in an overlap of the periods covered by the alert messages.
Recommendations to iNaturalist: it would be useful to implement the following in future versions of the API:
- enable the selection of a specific set of fields needed for a query (currently only complete data sets can be selected, which causes transfer of high data volumes and has a negative impact on climate and environment);
- enable precise periods for observation queries.
Example of an iNaturalist alert message
An alert system for neobiota observations recorded in the national database on natural heritage Recorder-Lux has been operational since 2019. It triggers an alarm message as soon as an observation is entered in data.mnhn.lu or uploaded to the Recorder-Lux database. It was implemented by Armand Turpel.
Example of a Recorder-Lux alert message
Thus, most neobiota observations from Luxembourg will trigger an alarm in a timely manner. However, a small gap remains: the observations of invasive alien bird species via the database of the Centrale Ornithologique du Luxembourg (COL) do not yet trigger an alarm in a timely manner. This currently concerns the following 4 bird species: Mandarin duck (Aix galericulata), Egyptian goose (Alopochen aegyptiaca), Canada goose (Branta canadensis) and Rose-ringed parakeet (Psittacula krameri).
Posted by C. Ries.