Citizen Science

The Citizen Science League defines it this way: “Citizen Science (CS) is a data-gathering technique that allows anyone to volunteer their time in support of scientific research projects. Researchers have often depended on volunteer labor, but the Internet age has allowed projects to link up with a global network of assistants via home computers and smart phones. It’s a symbiotic relationship–volunteers are able to partake in the act of furthering human knowledge, while research projects have a way to curb costs while expanding their scope.” In the birding area, one of the biggest citizen science programs is eBird, where bird sightings can be entered into a now-large database run by Cornell Lab of Ornithology and National Audubon Society.

Members of Yosemite Area Audubon Society are involved in a number of Citizen Science programs. We heartily welcome any of our members or neighbors who are interested in participating to contact us and join in the fun!

 

 

In 2012, the Yosemite Area Audubon Society began a long-term program to build, install, and monitor nestboxes in Madera, Mariposa, and Merced counties. The first year of the program focused on American Kestrels. For the 2013 nesting season, the program was expanded to include Barn Owls, Wood Ducks, and cavity-nesting songbirds.

 

Volunteers to help build and monitor the boxes are always welcome. Visit our main Nest Box Program page for more information. Please contact our Citizen Science Chair if you are interested in helping out with this program.

 

Since 2007, members of YAAS have been active participants in a raptor surveys in the Central Valley area. On a regular schedule, in accordance with defined survey protocols, we follow prescribed routes and count the number of raptors and note the location, species, and sex of the birds.

 

Visit our Raptor Surveys page for more information about this program. If you are interested in participating in this program, please let us know through the form on our Contact Us page.

 

Christmas Bird Counts are a census of all birds (all individuals and all species) found in a defined area on the count day. The count provides population data for use in research and conservation efforts.

 

Each year, YAAS conducts two local counts, in Oakhurst and Mariposa.

 

For more information about the Christmas Bird Count visit our CBC page, or National Audubon’s CBC page.

 

Specific dates for counts will be posted on our Calendar and our Field Trips pages.

 

YAAS also participates in other surveys and projects, including annual Shorebird surveys in Merced County, and surveys for Mountain Plovers and Tricolored Blackbirds.

 

The Condor Watch Project is asking for volunteers to participate in condor conservation by viewing online photographs of condors taken while they are feeding. To learn more, or to volunteer for the project, visit the Condor Watch website.

 

Online volunteers are being asked to classify images of penguin families to help monitor the health of penguin colonies in Antarctica. Learn more here.

 

Help track roadkill – sounds a bit gruesome but results of this citizen science project are used for identifying areas where culverts, underpasses, or other maintenance measures on the roadways can improve the likelihood that more animals can survive proximity to the roads. Enter roadkill observations at the California Roadkill Observation System (CROS)

 

The Zooniverse website has links to a great number of online citizen science projects.

 

 

 

 

 

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