Citizen Science is the crowd-sourcing of conservation data by the general public. It’s a hands-on way to get children involved in science and helps them learn new things about the world around them.
Here are a few citizen science initiatives we’ve done!
Coordinated nationally by Bird Studies Canada, the Christmas Bird Count for Kids (CBC4Kids) initiative provides an annual snapshot of how the birds are doing during December and January. Experienced guides show participants how to identify local species and lead them in counting birds. Findings are reported to eBird, where they can be used in scientific research. In the 2017/2018 season, 142 different bird species were reported from 58 CBC4Kids events across Canada. NatureKids BC hosted around 10 of these events through their family clubs across British Columbia.
Spring Amphibian Road Survey
In the spring many species of mature amphibians move to nearby breeding ponds and wetlands from their winter in the forest. Road crossings can be a major threat to many amphibians, particularly where roads and wetlands meet. Enter the road survey, where our Nature Clubs counted amphibians with local experts to determine where infrastructure placement would be most effective. The data collected by the clubs was entered into the Frogwatch BC online database. This data is accessible to scientists studying roads and amphibians, helping them research how to make the most effective wildlife underpasses.
Bat Citizen Science
In 2019/2020, we invited families, clubs and schools to get involved with different bat-themed Explorer Days. For example, led by bat enthusiast Trudy Chatwin and in association with the BC Community Bat program, our Nanaimo Nature Club learned about local bat species and how to conduct a bat count. The data they collected was incorporated into the BC Community Bat program.
Other initiatives we’ve been a part of: