Report a Sighting

You can report a Sighting anonymously or through your existing Codex account.

Ways to Report Sightings

Reporting anonymously

To report a Sighting without an account, you must upload images with your report. Your Sighting goes into a public queue where all researchers can access and process the data.

Start on the Codex homepage and click the REPORT SIGHTINGS button in the center of the page.

Now jump to the Optimizing Photos section below.

Reporting through an account

To report a Sighting through an account:

  1. Log in to your account by clicking the Login button at the top right of the homepage.
  2. Input your details into the Email address and Password fields.
  3. Click the LOGIN button. You will be automatically taken to the signed-in home page.
  4. Then click the + button in the top right menu bar for the Report a Sighting page.

Skip photos

If you are logged into an account, you can skip adding photos on the Report a Sighting page, by clicking the CONTINUE WITHOUT PHOTOGRAPHS button to go to the next page. Reporting a Sighting without photos is suitable when there is no analysis or automation available to assist a sighting submission. It also applies when there is already known information associated with the Sighting, such as historical catalogs.

Now jump to the Submitting single or multiple animals section below.

Reporting a Sighting

The standard way to report a Sighting is to upload images of the animals.

Optimizing photos


Before you upload any photos, it is advisable to ensure they are optimized to improve the chances of identification of animals in your photos.

  1. A more successful identification will result if an animal is:
    1. Distinguishable (i.e., free-standing or clearly in the foreground).
    2. Relatively large in the frame and has a decent resolution.
    3. Located near the center of the image.
    4. In focus and not blurry.
  2. Conversely, the identification process is more difficult if an animal is:
    1. Part of an overlapping herd or group of animals.
    2. Relatively small and/or contains few pixels.
    3. Out of focus and blurry.
    4. Located around the edges of the image.
    5. Significantly occluded by other animals or objects by more than 25%.
    6. Significantly off the edge of the frame of the image by more than 25%.
  3. These image formats and sizes can be accepted:
    1. JPG, JPEG, PNG, and BMP. TIFF files are not accepted.
    2. Between 480px and 1600px in width or height.
    3. A maximum compression ratio of 90%. To access this information on the Photography guidelines page during submission, navigate to the Report a Sighting page and click the optimize your photos link under the box.

Uploading photos

  1. On the Report a Sighting page, drag your image files into the box or click the browse files link to select images from your computer.
  2. Once your uploads are complete, click the CONTINUE button under the images.

To delete any photos, click the small cross in the top right corner of each photo.

Submitting single or multiple animals

A Sighting represents the overall observation of one or more animals. It enables information about social relationships and behaviors among multiple animals to be recorded. For each type of Sighting, a page is created displaying all the information about the animal/s in that Sighting. Codex gives users the option to report Sightings of either single or multiple animals to fully support and enhance the results.

When reporting single animals, the report form will show more configured custom fields. For multiple animals in a Sighting, animals are annotated separately.

Single animals

If a single animal is photographed at a location, it should be submitted as a single animal Sighting.

Click the option for One animal on the next page of reporting a Sighting. You can use more than one photo in the report.

Multiple animals

To process more than one animal in a Sighting, click the option for Multiple animals on the next page of reporting a Sighting. You can report multiple animals with just one photo.

To enable the identification of multiple animals, a user must manually process and group annotations in the curation process. Once annotations are assigned to all animals, identification can begin.

These last two sets of configured custom fields on the report form for multiple animals are not available:

  • Information about the animal/s, including species, sex, estimates of age and life stage, reproductive status, and behavior.
  • Distance between an individual animal and the group.

Report form

The standard report form has four required fields that need to be filled out:

  • The time of the Sighting. You will need to provide both how specific the information you have is (full date, just the year, etc.), as well as the actual information.
  • The region of a Sighting. Type to search for a region. If the region you need is not available in the list, contact your site admin to have one added. If a region is greyed out, it is not available to be selected. Use a more specific region.
  • A choice of Species Detection Model or manual annotation. When submitting a report using a Species Detection Model, the computer software will detect the animal and species to generate annotations to aid identification. For multiple animals, the computer software will separate and clone individual animals.

    When not using a Species Detection Model, the user must create annotations manually to enable identification and matching of the animal/s.

The report form then continues with additional fields for adding more details:

  • Freeform or exact location.
  • Your notes on the Sighting.

Additionally, your Codex admin may have configured custom fields. These could include:

  • The number of individual animals and their behaviors.
  • Environmental factors, including cloud cover, bushes, and effects of weather.
  • Information about the animal/s, including species, sex, estimates of age and life stage, reproductive status, and behavior.
  • Distance between an individual animal and the group.

Once you have finished filling in the report form, scroll past any fields you don’t wish to submit, then click the REPORT SIGHTING button at the bottom of the page.