Monitoring Biodiversity with Citizen Science

Across the planet, biodiversity is in decline, and yet many species are poorly monitored. My goal is to test how data collected by citizen scientists and professionals can compliment each other so that together we can improve biodiversity monitoring. This is the first step to conserving threatened species.

The Alberta Biodiversity Monitoring Institute (ABMI) has developed the citizen science app NatureLynx. NatureLynx is a mobile app and website where participants can upload photos of wild species in Alberta. Species identifications will be confirmed by taxonomic experts through the app.

I am collaborating with ABMI to compare the data collected through this app to data collected through ABMI’s professional biodiversity monitoring. Understanding the strengths and limitations of the data is necessary before it is used for biodiversity monitoring.

Citizen scientists will likely collect much more information than professional scientists could accomplish alone. But on the other hand there might be limitations to citizen science data collection; for example, ABMI can transport technicians by helicopter to remote sites but it’s likely that many citizen scientists will predominantly access public lands.

This project will enable citizen scientists to be active participants in monitoring biodiversity in Alberta.

Interested in participating in this research? Check out how to get involved to learn more.

A deer antler sits on the snowy ground in a forest.

Check out my completed projects under previous research.

Check out my list of publications to see my published articles and reports.