Richard Hasegawa Curator

Joined: Jun 7, 2019 Last Active: Jul 15, 2024 iNaturalist

Birder, herper, life list angler, and all-around nature enthusiast. I’ve always been fascinated with animals, and since picking up birding as a kid, I’ve found more and more to learn about in the natural world.

I'm a recent graduate from the University of California, Berkeley, where I received my B.A. in Geography and Integrative Biology. My primary academic interests are conservation ecology, biogeography, systematics, evolutionary ecology, and geomorphology.

In recent years, I've done work as a research assistant in an avian reproductive endocrinology lab, a conservation aviculturist at the George Miksch Sutton Avian Research Center for the Masked Bobwhite (Colinus virginianus ridgwayi) reintroduction program, a surveyor for Fish and Wildlife Service breeding bird surveys in east Texas and Oklahoma, a prairie-chicken lek surveyor for the Sutton Center, and a surveyor for the second Oklahoma Breeding Bird Atlas. I currently work for the United States Geological Survey, monitoring nesting success of shorebirds at breeding sites in the San Francisco Bay Area.


As a curator, I'm interested in revising the taxonomy of groups that have had numerous, complicated revisions that are improperly reflected by the iNaturalist taxonomy. I do my best to provide full documentation explaining the reason for any changes that I make, and I try to create flags for discussion before implementing large-scale changes. It's always possible that I've missed something in my review of taxonomic literature, so feel free to reach out via tag or message to let me know.

Curation projects that I'm currently working on include:

  • Revising Enterobacterales (Enterobacteriales) to reflect the restructuring of families and genera in Adeolu et al., 2016 and subsequent revisions
  • Merging obsolete synonyms in Ixodidae and updating taxon revisions.
  • Implementing viral binomial nomenclature in accordance with a recent decision by the ICTV and standardizing the formatting of 'freeform' viral names and viral abbreviations
  • Grafting genera in Curculionoidea to nest them within their currently accepted tribes and subfamilies
  • Grafting genera in Mycetophilidae and Keroplatidae to their accepted subfamilies and tribes

ID efforts I'm working on include:

  • Correcting IDs in Gasteracanthinae. Gasteracantha cancriformis is the only species occurring in the continental Americas, and it is often misidentified as other Australian/Asian species because it is highly polymorphic .
  • Monitoring Loxostege sticticalis observations in North America. Specimens formerly included under this name in the Americas are now properly referred to as Loxostege munroealis, and any individuals believed to be L. sticticalis, sensu stricto, would be notable and require extensive documentation. Primary literature on this change is difficult to access, and BugGuide and other commonly used online resources were slow to update info for this species, so this was a common misidentification until I recently revised observations.
  • Reviewing 'Arceuthobium campylopodum' observations on various host species. The Jepson manual uses an outdated taxonomy that does not differentiate between members of the 'A. campylopodum-occidentale' complex, which can be differentiated by morphology and host species. Because of a high degree of deference to the Jepson Manual (which is normally justified), many observations are currently identified as A. campylopodum that should instead be assigned to their POWO-accepted names. Subsequent Jepson Manual editions are likely to differentiate populations by host as either separate species or infraspecies, but regardless, they should be separated in iNaturalist as species in accordance with POWO and the most up-to-date literature on the complex. I'm currently developing a project to review these observations en masse.
  • Reviewing observations of commonly kept ornamental plant species in the East Bay and marking cultivated plants as such. I enjoy observing volunteers and escapees as 'wild' organisms, but urban areas often have huge numbers of observations of plants that are clearly inside cultivated plots. When I mark an observation as casual, I typically try to ID as specifically as I can with a note that the observed organism appears to be captive.
  • This specimen can be identified as A. buttoni because of the dark spots, which are only found on Reviewing IDs of *Ariolimax in California, which are often mis-IDed or IDed with excessive specificity. This is possible because of the excellent summary of research on this genus provided in this post by user thomaseverest.

I am sure to make mistakes in all these efforts, so feel free to tag or message me if you believe I have done so.


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