Notholithocarpus densiflorus and Arbutus menziesii variation

Looking at the photos for the iNaturalist entries for Notholithocarpus densiflorus and for Arbutus menziesii it is clear that there is a lot of variation. What I think of as the more "classic" N. densiflorus leaf shape are the ones with the pronounced bilateral ridges that run along the leaves at an angle and the pronounced spikes at the ends of the leaves. Usually also they are a faded, dusty green sort of color. They are unmistakable in many places such as along the Fern Creek Trail and mixed in with manzanitas along the trails at the higher elevations on the southern side of Mt. Tamalpais. But then there are what appear to be tanoaks that are more strange-looking.

The classic A. menziesii plant shape is more easy to recognize when it has grown to the size of a small tree, but young specimens can also be confusing.

I uploaded some observations from the last two hikes of some specimens that iNaturalist wasn't able to recognize nor can I. It seems like iNaturalist's AI recognition system should do a better job at recognizing leaves. Another issue with iNaturalist is that the lead photos for species which show up when you view a "suggested" species are often not helpful.

They should make a point of showing the most helpful photos as the lead photos for a species - show the leaf, leaf underside, stem morphology, etc. as the lead photos. Also photos with a picture of a finger or other object to provide an indication of scale is very important, especially when viewing individual leaves.

Also helpful would be to show young or juvenile leaves and plants and oddball-looking ones for sake of reference.

Publicado el septiembre 6, 2020 08:08 MAÑANA por xpacifica xpacifica


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