April 24 is Firefly Day!

To get us all in the mood to celebrate the start of Firefly season, check out Owl City’s Fireflies music video. The Museum of Science, Boston, kicks off each year of its Firefly Watch citizen science project with a day-long celebration in honor of everyone’s favorite insect and the volunteers who help monitor their populace … Read more “April 24 is Firefly Day!”

Categories: Citizen Science, Contest, Insects

Five springtime projects for citizen scientists

Now that spring has sprung in the Northern Hemisphere, Mother Nature is tempting winter-weary citizen scientists out of doors with all kinds of colorful, action-packed events. Buds are bursting forth, chatty bird couples are flirting and building nests, and the excitable atmospheric conditions of the new season are conjuring up fresh cloud patterns in the … Read more “Five springtime projects for citizen scientists”

Categories: Animals, Citizen Science, Climate & Weather, Ecology & Environment, Insects, Nature & Outdoors

The Seattle Aquarium knows their citizen science

You know an organization is serious about science when they dedicate 15 years to a research project. Well, that’s exactly what the Seattle Aquarium is doing with their citizen science program — a fifteen year program to characterize and study the habitats of seven Seattle-area beaches. At the heart of the program are teams of citizen science-trained high school … Read more “The Seattle Aquarium knows their citizen science”

Categories: Animals, Ecology & Environment, Nature & Outdoors, Ocean & Water, Science Education Standards

Charlotte Observer: “Citizen Science is in full flight.”

This week, an article in the Charlotte Observer newspaper featured citizen scientist Benton Bragg and his family. The Braggs installed a video camera in an owl box to track the habits of the owl and her babies. “We never know what we’re going to see,” Bragg said. “One night she brought in seven snakes. Another … Read more “Charlotte Observer: “Citizen Science is in full flight.””

Categories: Animals, Birds, Citizen Science, In the News, Nature & Outdoors

Tracking Jellyfish around the globe

Jellyfish, in addition to being one of many ocean creatures that terrify me, are an important part of the underwater ecosystem. However, several reports have indicated an unusually high increase in Jellyfish populations, and scientists are in need of help to understand why. Enter JellyWatch, a new citizen science project that aims to create a database of jellyfish … Read more “Tracking Jellyfish around the globe”

Categories: Animals, Ecology & Environment, Ocean & Water

Philly citizens help toads cross the road

They come by the hundreds, always under cover of night: It’s the annual migration of American toads in Upper Roxborough, a suburb of Philadelphia. And that means it’s time for the Toad Detour, when citizens and officials come together to close local roads—and educate commuters—so the amphibians can cross safely to their breeding grounds. From … Read more “Philly citizens help toads cross the road”

Categories: Amphibians, Animals, Biology, Nature & Outdoors

What’s all the buzz about bees?

Before I headed to Austin, TX  last week for the SXSW music, film, and interactive conference (I helped put together a panel discussion there on the Future of Gaming for Discover Magazine and the National Science Foundation), I Googled “citizen science in Austin” and came upon the Texas Beewatchers. The organizer of this citizen science … Read more “What’s all the buzz about bees?”

Categories: Citizen Science, Ecology & Environment, Insects, Nature & Outdoors

Help needed: monarch butterflies in trouble

Monarch butterflies need our help! The regal butterflies, hit hard by the torrential February rains in Mexico, are at their lowest population levels since 1975,  according to Chip Taylor, director of Monarch Watch at the University of Kansas. The storms killed 50 to 60 percent of the breeding colonies in northern Mexico; the butterfly population … Read more “Help needed: monarch butterflies in trouble”

Categories: Ecology & Environment, Insects, Nature & Outdoors

“Who’s whoo-ing” in your backyard?

Are you a Westchester (NY), Putnam (NY), or Fairfield County (CT) resident just itching for a reason to dust off that old boombox? If so, the The Who’s Whoo-ing citizen science project needs you to play a CD of owl calls for 10 minutes and record if a response is heard. Using simple “call playback surveys”, the Mianus River … Read more ““Who’s whoo-ing” in your backyard?”

Categories: Animals, Birds, Citizen Science, Nature & Outdoors

The hummingbird versus Godzilla–on video!

To fans of hummingbirds and “nature cams,” Phoebe Allens needs no introduction. She’s an intrepid little momma bird whose adventures in nurturing her young have been well documented by a Web cam pointed at her nest in a rose bush in Orange County, California. Now that spring is nearly here, it’s time for another exciting … Read more “The hummingbird versus Godzilla–on video!”

Categories: Animals, Birds, Citizen Science, Nature & Outdoors