Citizen science, or Citizen Based Monitoring (CBM), is a term used to describe ongoing scientific research performed by volunteers, individually or collectively, many of which have no scientific background or training. The duties performed are, but not limited to, observations, measurements, possible manipulation of some plant/animal species, and computation of the information gathered.
The use of such volunteer monitoring programs allow scientists to accomplish project goals in a more timely fashion due to the sheer number of hours of research executed and locations studied by capable substitutes.
In addition, the projects help to promote public awareness and engagement, which leads to a greater sense of ownership within a community.
Monitoring projects can focus on a particular plant or animal species, an entire habitat (forest, wetland, prairie, watershed, etc.) or some component of the habitat. The topic of study usually stems from a lack of information on the subject or a concern about the future of the subject due to extenuating circumstances.
Mosquito Hill Nature Center is currently working on over a dozen CBM projects on the nature center property or surrounding area:
Monarch Larva Monitoring Project
Wood Duck Box Monitoring
Bluebird Box Monitoring
Midwest Crane Count
Wisconsin Frog and Toad Survey
Christmas Bird Count
Great Backyard Bird Count
Purple Loosestrife Monitoring
Prothonotary Warbler Nest Box Monitoring
If you are interested in assisting with any of the projects listed, please email naturalist Jessica Miller for more information.
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