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Frequently asked questions

Check our list of FAQs below. If you don’t find the answer you need, send us your question.


How do I get involved?

Before you start you’ll need to do a quick tutorial that will explain how to classifying the images. This should only take a few minutes. Then you’re ready to get wildlife spotting.
>Get involved


Do I need to register to do Wildlife Spotter?

No, you don’t need to register to start processing the images and spotting animals.

However, there are good reasons to register – it means you can track the number of done you’ve done; choose which project you want to do; and you’ll automatically be entered into the competition to win prizes once you’ve classified 10 images (and you get another competition entry for every additional 10 images you classify) (Please note: you need to be an Australian resident to enter the competition

>Start classifying

Can people from outside Australia participate?

Absolutely. We’d love anyone on the planet to join in.
On the other hand, the competition is only open to Australian residents so if you’re living outside of Australia you won’t be automatically entered into the competition.


Can children do Wildlife Spotter?

Yes, children of (roughly) 8 and older can competently identify animals and process the images, and will probably get a massive buzz from doing it. Children do need parental approval to register. Parents and teachers should ensure that children have watched the tutorial and understand what they’re supposed to do.

How do I enter the competition to win a GoPro Camera?

You’ll need to register for Wildlife Spotter and then classify 10 images. This will get you one competition entry and you’ll get an additional competition entry for every 10 images you classify.  So the more images you do, the more chance you have of winning!

Can I edit my details after I’ve registered?

Simply login and then click on ‘Edit’ next to your name within the classifying interface.

How will I find out the results of our work?

You can stay in touch with any outcomes from Wildlife Spotter by
FacebookABC Science and National Science Week
TwitterNational Science Week and ABC Science
Email –  ABC Science Updates

Why do I need to watch a tutorial before I start classifying the images?

Classifying the images in Wildlife Spotter is an important job and we need you to do the best job you can. The tutorial will show you what to look for and how to use the classifying interface.

How do I watch the tutorial again?

You can watch it again at any time – click on ‘Help’ from the classifying interface and you’ll find the link to ‘Tutorial’ in the list.

Can I get some feedback on how I’m going?

It would be lovely to be able to give feedback, but one of the main purposes of Wildlife Spotter is to lessen the work for the scientists. And asking them to review people’s performance would massively increase it!

Don’t forget, the system is set up in such a way that each image is processed by at least 5 citizen scientists. The scientists will then look more closely at the images that received a range of different classifications – making the assumption that they were difficult to classify – and will check them over themselves.


What do I do if I make a mistake?

If you want to remove a classification you can either delete it from the Classification Status (just click on the x) or you can click on the animal identifier image again (this will remove the tick)

However, once you’ve clicked ‘Submit’ for an image then you can’t go back and re-do it.

Don’t worry too much if you think you’ve made a mistake – each image will be done by five different people – it’s a process designed to weed out any little errors.


How do I get my school involved?

Take a read through our suggestions on getting your students involved Wildlife Spotter.

>How do I get my school group involved?


Technical issues

What do I do if I have a technical question?

If you can’t find the answer on the site you can use the contact us form to send us an email.

Classifying images - the basics

There’s three images – which image do I classify?

Only classify the image marked ‘Classify this image’.

We include a before and after image if they’re available to help you see movement and identify any animals.  Sometimes you might see the whole animal in the ‘before’ image but only a bit in the image you’re classifying.

Just remember – only identify animals in the image marked ‘classify this image’ – if you don’t see an animal in that image then click  ‘There’s no animal in view’ in the Classification Status.

What if I see an animal in the image before or after the image marked ‘classify this image’?

Only identify animals in the image marked ‘classify this image’

I’m not sure if there is an animal or not?

Use the triangular play button to see if there is any movement – this can show if there is an animal or not


How do I zoom into an image?

Use the + button to zoom into the image.

How do I make the images ‘play’?

Click on the triangle shaped play button beneath the image to make shift between the images.

What do I do if there’s no animal in the image?

It’s really valuable to the scientists to know which images have animals and which don’t!

If you get an image where there’s no animal then click ‘There’s no animal in view’ in the Classification Status.

There’s something weird about my image – what do I do?

Maybe the image is distorted or it’s a photo of the back of a truck – if you get an image where there is something weird going on then click ‘There’s a problem with the image’ in the Classification Status.

Identifying animals

I’ve seen something but have no idea what it is.

It can be hard to identify the animals. You can use the search buttons to narrow down the animals you see – searching by shape, tail, animal type or size can help you identify the animal.

If you can’t identify the animal then see if you can work out whether it’s a mammal, reptile or bird. And if all else fails you can identify it as ‘something else’ – that way the researchers will know tht there is a scientists

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