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Smartphone Apps for Wildlife Observations

In June I attended the Ecology as Education and Research (EREN) conference and learned of an App designed for demographers and epidemiologists to map diseases. We learned that there was potential to create our own projects using this Epicollect platform that had been developed at the Imperial College of London. I came back to Plattsburgh and developed a Project for for roadkill and live wildlife sightings (nature walks, brisk walks to work in the city). I am really excited to share this with you, in my classes, and the greater community. I'd love to get this citizen science project up and running. We welcome participants from the U.S. and our international neighbors!  The 3 project forms are called RoadkillGarneau, WildlifeBlitzGarneau, and TrackingWildlifeGarneau.

Citizen Science:
You can access the data and see a map of the 3 projects at their respective websites:


DON'T FORGET, in order to see your smartphone sightings on these websites above, you need to SYNC your data to the epicollect server. There is a SYNC button on your phone in Epicollect.

DO NOT FRET those of you without smartphones (although I do encourage you to get on board when you upgrade b/c I love mine), I have created a google form at the BOTTOM OF THE PAGE  where you can input your sightings to the project. Feel free to email me your photo at dgarn001@plattsburgh.edu and be sure to label the image with the same Roadkill or live wildlife sighting # you place in the form so I can pair the data with the picture. NOTE: If you need to find latitude/longitude simply go to google map and find the location you need then right click. Next select "What's here" and in the search window the latitude longitude pops up.

For those of you WITH SMARTPHONES:
Instructions to upload and participate in wildlife observation collection on smartphones (Droid and iPhone/iPod/iPad):

iPhone install directions
Android phone install directions

Also feel free to email me for my directions for upload if the ones posted below are confusing at:

iNaturalist option for smartphone users struggling with Epicollect entry problems:
If you want to use your smartphone, but Epicollect is too glitchy for you, our friends at Adventurers and Scientists for Conservation have created iNaturalist projects for live animal sightings (ASC Wildlife Observations) and tracking wildlife sign (ASC Wildlife Track Project). Simply install iNaturalist as an app on your phone and seek out those 2 projects in which to participate.


The project was featured on NPR Weekend Edition, many thanks to reporter Sarah Harris for the piece:

as well as on our local North Country Public Radio (NCPR) station (more colorful listen):

Likewise we were featured in Goverment Technology magazine:

Even on Slashdot.org

EXCITING NEWS! We will be working with Adventurers and Scientists for Conservation which partners outdoor enthusiasts with science projects. Bikers, hikers, kayakers etc. will be collecting data for these citizen science projects! The recently created a link from their webpage for our project!
Check them out (they are pretty cool!):    http://www.adventureandscience.org/

General Overview:

First step is to download the app Epicollect from either the apple app store (iPhone) OR google play store (Droids). Once that is complete, you will need to upload the project forms WildlifeBlitzGarneau and/or RoadkillGarneau   notes for upload are detailed for the device at the Epicollect website or shoot me an email for help.

Here is a sampling of the WildlifeBlitzGarneau project to get you excited! The snake was too quick for me to get a picture of it, but here is what it looked like.
   Photo credit: http://planetanimalzone.blogspot.com/2011/12/eastern-milk-snake.html

This is what I see in the data form:

Here is a red squirrel that was observed on Bearswamp Rd. in Peru NY on July 27, 2012 from the RoadkillGarneau project and a screen capture of what I see in the project detail window as the sightings grow (with your help)!

Below note the Gray squirrel sited along the city street in Plattsburgh, NY on South Platt St.

In the form, I included questions about habitat, scavengers, gender, road type, speed limit, traffic, etc. Below is a red squirrel entry, common in the North Country.

Above pictured is a garter snake in MA (left) and Northern leopard frog in NY (right).

Below pictured is a painted turtle (Ausable, NY) that was one of 3 found as roadkill that were crossing the street from one small forested wetland to another (red star is location of roadkilled turtles, letter A is nearby residence). Good to know we have an active population in the area for the EREN turtle population estimation, but sad to have N= 3 fewer turtles in that population. Monitoring will continue and perhaps recommendations shared with the NYS DEC about herp crossing signage etc.

ATTENTION NON-SMARTPHONE USERS: click on these links to input your form data and see google map of sightings:

RoadkillGarneau DEAD wildlife sightings Form and Map

WildlifeBlitzGarneau LIVE wildlife sightings Form and Map

TrackingWildlifeSignGarneau Form and Map

Hope to see you participating in these  CITIZEN SCIENCE WILDLIFE PROJECTS!!