A Guide for 'Lead Bio-Experts'

How to verify sightings?

How to manage sightings? 

When you help identify sightings through QuestaGame’s Bio-Expertise Engine (BEE), the benefits are huge!

  • You are not only helping budding naturalists grow their own knowledge, 
  • AND ensuring high quality data for biodiversity researchers,
  • BUT YOU'RE ALSO raising money for your chosen cause (through the Pays to Know Nature Fund)!

Speaking of helping budding naturalists, in the past year we've had thousands of new QuestaGamers sign up and this growth is expected to continue! To help with this increasing demand, we're testing a new role for Bio-Experts who have a proven track-record. We call this new role ‘Lead Bio-Experts’, and we think you will make a great one! 

It's all about getting quality identifications back to our players as fast as possible.



As a Lead Bio-Expert you now have access to a 'Verify Sightings' view in BEE. This view:

  1. allows you to scroll through multiple sightings, while seeing identifications suggested by others Bio-Experts,
  2. provides the ability to ‘Verify’ sightings, sending them straight back to the players (rather than wait for further identification suggestions to come in), and
  3. *New feature* allows you to feature image sightings on QuestaGame's homepage and/or social media, or reject a sighting entirely, or delete individual image sightings that are inappropriate / unsuitable for verification or sharing with biodiversity databases.

You can still filter the sightings you see based on your 'Settings'. And you can still use the traditional ‘Home’ and ‘Browse sightings’ views, if you’d like to offer identifications against sightings without having to ‘verify’. You can also skip any sighitngs you are not comfortable 'verifying'.


Verify Sightings


The ‘Verify Sightings’ view should open by default for you when you login to BEE (though you may have to reset bookmarks). Once logged in, you can access the 'Verify Sightings’ view through BEE’s main navigation. See below for some step-by-step tips on how to 'verify' sightings:

1.   First, assess whether you have enough information on hand to verify the sighting, and if not, simply hit 'Skip' and scroll to the next sighting. 

  • You can click on the image thumbnail to see a larger image, and other photos from the same sighting.
  • You can see identifications suggested by other Bio-Experts (whether through BEE directly, or other sources such as iNaturalist).

2.   If you have decided that you are able to verify the sighting, follow these steps:

1. Confirm 'Publish to ALA' setting. If this is ticked, the sighting will be sent to the biodiversity research database Atlas of Living Australia (where it will be available for GBIF to harvest). Please un-tick this box if you believe the sighting does not have value for biodiversity research.


2. Enter the best possible identification into the field 'GBIF ID'. You can use the scientific name to search the GBIF database, and use the drop down to specify taxon level. If you are unable to find the specific taxon, check if GBIF uses a synonym for that taxon. If you are still having trouble, just 'Skip' that sighting. 


3. Usually you can ignore the 'Target GBIF ID' field. The 'depth' of the 'Target GBIF ID', corresponds to the depth a player requests when they submit a sighting in QuestaGame. Ultimately we try to get our GBIF ID to at least meet the depth requested by the player - but depending on the quality of the sighting, this is not always possible. The Target GBIF ID is usually auto-filled based on what you enter for the GBIF ID. It should either match the GBIF ID, or be an appropriate higher level taxon. If Target GBIF ID does not auto-fill, just copy across the GBIF ID.


4. Ignore the score. In most cases the system will generate a score, but if it doesn't just leave this blank (the score will still be determined before the sighting goes back to the player).


5. Provide feedback for the player. The player is automatically notified of what they have found, so generally all that is needed here is a note saying something like "Nice sighting". If it is a particularly interesting sighting feel free to add additional comments. If the depth requested with the Target GBIF ID is set to 6 or higher this means the player would like some additional information about the species along with the identification. In these instances, the 'feedback helper' shows previous sighting feedback which could be of use.


6. Confirm 'ID Bonus' setting. If this is ticked, the player will receive a bonus for guessing the correct ID.  This is usually auto-determined, but make sure it is checked if you feel the player deserves the bonus.


7. Hit 'Verify' to send it off to the player. If you encountered any issues along the way and are no longer confident with the sighting, just hit 'Skip' instead.


8. Once all sightings on the page are completed (either 'verified' or 'skipped'), hit 'Refresh All' at the bottom of the page to get a new batch and start again.


Manage Sightings

As a Lead Bio-expert you now have the ability to feature, reject and delete image sightings to ensure all sightings are of the highest quality for biodiversity researchers. 

You can access this feature within the ‘Verify Sightings’ view, under the 'Manage Sightings' tab.

BEE Manage Sightings 1.png

Then simply select one of the options:


'Feature Sighting'

In choosing to “feature” a sighting, you agree the sighting is especially noteworthy because of the high quality of its image(s) and/or the uniqueness of the find. 

The sighting will be featured on QuestaGame’s homepage and/or social media as an example of an especially noteworthy submission.

                         ' Feature Sighting '

                         'Feature Sighting'


'Reject Sighting' or 'Delete Image'

You can “reject” an entire sighting or “delete” a particular image within a sighting because of at least one of the following reasons...

  • It’s a duplicate of a previous sighting/submission. 
  • The sighting contains multiple images with different specimens, and you are removing the image(s) not relevant to the primary sighting.
  • The image is otherwise irrelevant to the sighting.
  • It doesn’t include a specimen.
  • It’s a photo of a human or contains a recognisable human within it.
  • It’s a screenshot, copied image, or a photo of a photo, or doesn’t belong to the submitter.
  • It’s a pet. 
  • It’s a cultivated plant. 
  • It’s a domestic animal (such as a farm animal) or is living in an enclosure (such as a zoo).
  • It’s not clear enough to make even the most basic identification (e.g. bird, reptile, etc).
  • It involves a dangerous situation, for example if it’s taken from the driver’s seat of a moving car.
  • It involves cruelty or is meant to offend

Remember, you can choose to “delete” irrelevant or inappropriate images within a sighting, while still keeping the sighting, to ensure only the highest quality images are identified and available for biodiversity researchers.

                         ' Reject Sighting '

                         'Reject Sighting'

                           ' Delete Image '

                           'Delete Image'