August
20
2013

Did You Know That Apps + Citizen Scientists Are Redefining Our Conceptions Of Bird Populations In The United States?

by Alex Gilliam 122 Comments

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Looking at storm water and distributed green infrastructure in NYC is just one aspect of citizen science. You guys are groundbreakers to be sure as nobody is attempting such a complicated citizen scientist program anywhere. That being said, you are not alone. There are many others across the United States who are trying to rethink how non-experts such as yourselves can fundamentally change how we look at and go about conducting research and making our cities/the environment better. One great example is the eBird project that empowers everyday people to help map birds throughout the United States. There are many other programs that attempt to do similar things but eBird is unique in that it tries to get people to record bird sitings year-round. This is notable because most people don’t have the tenacity or interest to continue to record things over a period of time without some sort of deeper incentive. In fact most other programs get people to count birds for just one day a year. The problem is that one day a year only provides a limited data set and already eBird is providing scientists with much deeper insights into migrations patterns and bird species. In this way, eBird and our Citizen Scientist program are similar. You can read a bit more about the eBird program in this recent article in the New York Times.

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