Join the City Nature Challenge!

What is CNC?

What's in it for you?

Getting your badge

The i.Naturalist App

Getting outdoors, spending time with friends, and learning interesting things about the nature around us is part of this year’s National Challenge Health and Well-Being! Well we have a fun activity for you all to join, and you could earn an extra event badge in the process!

SCOUTS South Africa has been participating in the City Nature Challenge (CNC) for many years within the Western Cape. This year we are inviting all our Meerkats, Cubs, Scouts, Rovers, Scouters and Scouting parents around the country to participate in the City Nature Challenge 2024 and help put Scouting and the biodiversity in our areas on the Map.

All it takes is to download the iNaturalist App, snap photos of plants, animals, insects, fungi, etc. in your garden, local park or nature reserve and upload them on the App between 26 to 30 April 2024. Scouting members who submit 10 or more observations will be able to wear a CNC2024 badge on their uniforms! Also, you can decide whether to spend 10 minutes or 2 hours exploring and taking photos.

How does it work?

Click here for the City Nature Challenge 2024 – Summary document

Participating in the City Nature Challenge is as easy as 1 2 3!

  1. Find wild life – It can be any WILD plant, animal, insect, or any other evidence of life found in your city.
  2. Take a Picture or Record a Sound – Take a picture or record the sound of what you find. Be sure to note the location of the critter or plant.
  3. Share – share your observations through the iNaturalist App or your city’s chosen platform. If it’s planted or taken care of by people, it is not WILD. Mark it captive/cultivated! Only WILD observations count for this inter-city global campaign with a competitive edge :-).
  4. IMPORTANT! – Make sure on the iNaturalist App to join the Scouts South Africa project .
    Click on the hamburger icon (Android) or More (iPhone), Projects, magnifying glass, search for Scouts South Africa, click on it, and then click on Join. You then need to add the SCOUTS SA project to each observation.

You will need:

  • Have access to a smartphone with a camera and GPS (switched on).
  • Have access to a Wi-Fi connection (or data for phone – but this can be expensive).
  • Install the iNaturalist App and sign up. Find out how this works HERE.
  • Join the “Scouts South Africa” project on the iNaturalist App.


  • Parents are welcome to supervise Meerkats, Cubs and Scouts who do not have their own smartphone. More specifically, the iNaturalist App terms and conditions state: ” “The Platform and Services are available only to individuals who are at least 13 years old, unless parental permission has been obtained.”
  • Ideally siblings and parents should all have their own login username. However, less optimally, you may also use one username in the family.

The City Nature Challenge badge:

  • Any Meerkat, Cub, Scout, or uniformed Scouter who submits ten or more valid observations from 26 to 30 April 2024 will have earned a City Nature Challenge badge. They will be sold through your Scout Region and the process to obtain the badges can be found HERE. We are finalising this year’s design, but it will be an embroidered badge similar to the image shown.

Simple Rules

  • No selfies, people, pets, goats, horses, sheep, cattle and pot plants.
  • Photos of animals, plants or fungi growing in your garden naturally, parks or nature reserves and even indoors are good subjects. Look inside and underneath pot plants for woodlice, snails, earthworms, etc., and look on the plants for caterpillars, aphids, scale and other creatures that enjoy your plants. Photograph flies and ants in your kitchen or even the fleas and ticks on your pets – the scope is limitless!
  • Take several pictures of any animal/plant to show different important features.
  • Zoom in for small details – it must fill the screen and not be a dot on the picture.
  • Only one species per observation. Start another observation for any other / new species.
  • The observations must be taken during the campaign period and uploaded successfully to count.

More info

Want to find out more about the City Nature Challenge 2024: