Citizen Science

Posted on Posted in Blog, Everything Else, Reviews

Citizen Science is where it’s at! Some great sites where you can get involved:

Butterflies and Moths of North America

Butterflies and Moths of North America (BAMONA) is an ambitious effort to collect, store, and share species information and occurrence data.

You can participate by taking and submitting photographs of butterflies, moths, and caterpillars.

Odonata Central

This site is designed to make available what we know about the distribution, biogeography, biodiversity, and identification of Odonata (dragonflies and damselflies) in the Western Hemisphere.

Submit your photographic sightings of dragonflies and damselflies to the database. Sponsored by the University of Alabama Museums.

PA Herps

Pennsylvania Herp Identification is an educational tool for the public on the reptiles and amphibians found though out Pennsylvania. The project also aims to create knowledge to Pennsylvania residents not only through the internet, but also through interaction with the public, with the help of volunteers in the field to communicate with individuals on a personal level.

Sign up and submit your photographic herp sightings.


More than just a clearinghouse for information, this site helps expand on the natural histories of our subjects. By capturing the place and time that submitted images were taken, we are creating a virtual collection that helps define where and when things might be found.

Send in your photos of bugs! Even ones that you can’t identify. The volunteer naturalists will help you out. BugGuide is hosted by the Iowa State University Department of Entomology.


One of the biggest citizen science projects around. eBird’s goal is to maximize the utility and accessibility of the vast numbers of bird observations made each year by recreational and professional bird watchers. It is amassing one of the largest and fastest growing biodiversity data resources in existence.

Want something more? Wikipedia has a long list of Citizen Science projects around the globe.

Citizen science projects are activities sponsored by a wide variety of organizations so non-scientists can meaningfully contribute to scientific research. Activities vary widely from transcribing old ship logbooks to digitize the data as part of the Old Weather project to observing and counting birds at home or in the field for eBird.Participation can be as simple as playing a computer game for a project called EyeWire that may help scientists learn more about retinal neurons. It can also be more in depth, such as when citizens collect water quality data over time to assess the health of local waters. An emerging branch of Citizen Science are Community Mapping projects that utilize smartphone and tablet technology. For example, TurtleSAT is a community mapping project that is mapping freshwater turtle deaths throughout Australia.

And just because …. have some butterflies.

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