ClimateWatch

An initiative of Earthwatch Institute

Frequently Asked Questions

ClimateWatch staff are here to help and support you record on indicator species. If you find you are having issues with our website, mobile app, or need more information on how to record, please use these FAQs. If you cannot find the answer here, please contact us

Website and account 

  1. I have forgotten my password.
  2. I tried to reset my password, but I did not get a password reset email.  What now?
  3. I’m recording as part of a university group, but I haven’t received my ClimateWatch invitation. What should I do? 
  4. I can't access my account because it says that my email does not exist.

Recording

  1. I don’t have a GPS or smart phone, how do I record my location?
  2. How often should I record?
  3. Can I record anywhere?
  4. I’m in a group, should everyone submit recordings?
  5. What if I’m not 100% sure I have the right species?  
  6. I recorded on the wrong species, how do I delete a sighting?
  7. I want to see the photo that I uploaded for a sighting, where can I access it?
  8. I’m done recording in the field, now what?
  9. What happens to my recordings?

1. I have forgotten my password.

On the sign-in page, click ‘reset password.’  This generates an automatic email that will have a password reset link.  Click on that link and you will be prompted to enter a new password.

2. I tried to reset my password, but I did not get a password reset email.  What now?

Try using a different browser.  Google Chrome works the best with our website or make sure you are running the most up-to-date version of Internet Explorer, Firefox, and Safari.  .

3. I’m recording as part of a university group, but I haven’t received my ClimateWatch invitation. What should I do?

Check your spam folder.  Check with your lecturer to see what email you have registered for your class to make sure it is correct.  If the correct email has been used, but you still have not received an invitation, then register using another email.  Contact the ClimateWatch staff directly to let us know which email address you have registered and what university you are recording with so that we can allocate you to the correct university group.

4. I can't access my account because it says that my email does not exist.

Did you authenticate Facebook or Twitter to act as your login?  If you did, then your email becomes linked to your Facebook/Twitter and you need to sign in using either Facebook/Twitter.  Our system prevents duplicate accounts from being created (i.e. email login and Facebook login) so you can only access your account with one type of login.

Mobile app

1. Where have all my sightings gone on ‘My sightings’ on my iPhone/Android?

If you delete/un-install/re-install the app on your iPhone, your sightings list will be cleared.  This will not affect your sightings on the website.  We suggest un-installing and re-installing the app to help clear the data on your phone.  On Androids, if you hold the ClimateWatch icon, you are given two options: Un-install or App Info.  If you drag the icon to ‘App info,’ you can clear the cache to remove sightings and clear space on your phone. 

2. I opened the ClimateWatch app, but it's blank or the photos are not loaded.

Do you have 3G or wifi turned on? Sometimes our app will not load if there is no connection.  If you do have connection and it still does not load, please un-install and re-install the app. 

3. I tried to submit a sighting but it says that my GPS coordinates are not accurate enough and to try again later.

Do you have your 'location services enabled' on your smartphone? Check your settings on your iPhone or Android. Sometimes you may have location services enabled for some apps, but not others. Ensure you have it turned on for ClimateWatch. Or if this still does not work, un-install and re-install your app. When you re-install, ClimateWatch will ask 'Do you want ClimateWatch to access your location?,' click yes to allow. 


4. How do I change the species name from 'Common Name' to 'Scientific Name'?

Go to 'My Account', click 'Settings' and then click on 'Common Name'.  This will change species names from common name to scientific name.

5. I cannot hear any of the bird or frog calls.

It may take a minute for the app to play the call.  If you still cannot hear it, please un-install and re-install the app.  If you still cannot hear it, please contact us so we can resolve the bug. 

6. I’m in a low-reception area, will my sightings still be uploaded?

The app will automatically cache any sightings you make and will upload them to the database when you regain reception.  If you check your sightings list on your smartphone, it will have an asterisk (*) when it has not been uploaded.  This an asterisk (*) disappears and your sighting will say ‘Uploaded: Yes’ when it is correctly synced to your web account.  Make sure to check your web account frequently to ensure all sightings are syncing. If they aren’t, contact the ClimateWatch staff immediately.

Recording

1. I don’t have a GPS or smart phone, how do I record my location?

Take note of your location by writing comments about visible landmarks (streets, residences, shops, etc) or by drawing a sketch of the area. When you enter in your data on www.climatewatch.org.au, use our address locater to help you pinpoint your location. If you record at this area frequently, save it as one of your locations. 

2. How often should I record?.

Record as often as you can (daily, weekly, monthly). Science often relies on precise measurements; and, identifying the exact date when a species moves into an area, washes up on the beach or increases dramatically in abundance is very important for long term data sets like ours. Regular recording also enables you to identify exactly when changes have occurred in your area, just like a personalised log book. 

3. Can I record anywhere?

Yes!  ClimateWatch has 170+ species for you to record all over Australia.  The next time you are out walking your dog, bushwalking, walking to uni, or strolling through a garden, see if you can spot any ClimateWatch species.  If you’re unsure of where to start, try a ClimateWatch trail.  These trails have been created with the help of Botanic Gardens, Universities, Scouts, Friends of Gardens groups, and educators around Australia.  

4. I’m in a group, should everyone submit recordings?

Yes.  Multiple entries enable scientists to ensure there is consistency amongst observations and also help to improve our sampling processes.  It also helps to observe with others in case you are unsure of a sighting, your buddy can help confirm what you see. 

5. What if I’m not 100% sure I have the right species?  

If you think you have the right species but are a little unsure, record it and leave a message for our scientists in the ‘comments’ section of the data recording page, write: “SPECIES REQUIRES CHECKING”. Make sure you submit a good quality photo. If you are only 50% or less sure you have the correct species, do not record it but take several photos and send them to the ClimateWatch team on our website for verification. 

6. I recorded on the wrong species, how do I delete a sighting?

You cannot delete a sighting, but you can edit it to be a relevant species.  Login to your account and select ‘My sightings.’ Edit the sighting you want to change and change it to a relevant sighting that you made.

7. I want to see the photo that I uploaded for a sighting, where can I access it?

Go to ‘My account’ and select ‘My sightings.’  Underneath all of your sightings, click ‘View all.’  This brings up all sightings in chronological order, click on the timestamp link to view all recorded information and to see your photo.  

8. I’m done recording in the field, now what?

Once you are done recording in the field, you should always enter your data online, www.climatewatch.org.au. If you are using an iPhone/Android app, all of your sightings will automatically sync to your web account. Check your account online if you want to edit your sightings. 

9. What happens to my recordings?

All of your sightings will go into our database.  This information will be publicly available on the Atlas of Living Australia and can be downloaded for free. The data will be used by researchers and policy makers to help Australia build our understanding of climate change and biological systems so we can better manage and conserve our environment.