WildlifeXing Program

A Community Science App and High School Migration Educational Unit

What is WildlifeXing?

On the Northern Great Plains, pronghorn inhabit the ancestral land of the Anskani Pikuni (Blackfeet), Nakoda Oyadebi (Assiniboine), A'aninin (Gros Ventre), and Apsáalooke (Crow) nations.

In the mythology of Plains Indians, pronghorn often play the role of messengers. In some tribes, the appearance of a pronghorn in a human settlement had the meaning of a message from the spirit world. Even though the range of the pronghorn is greatly diminished, the animal continues to play a part in the ceremonial life of many Western Indigenous people, including the Pueblo and Hopi of the Southwest.

“It’s not too late to secure these ancient pathways,” said Kelsey Molloy, a Nature Conservancy range ecologist. “With the cooperation of landowners, scientists, agencies and conservation organizations, a future for these beautiful animals can be assured.”

WildlifeXing Program is a citizen science app with an accompanying high school education unit (grades 9-12) centered on wildlife and connectivity, specifically pronghorn antelope. Students and teachers use the app, WildlifeXing to collect GPS points where wildlife are observed crossing or trying to cross roadways and fences. The WildlifeXing citizen-science app data collection is vital to identifying pinch points where wildlife are crossing, successfully or unsuccessfully, to share with state agencies with the goal wildlife crossing structures could be installed. The educational unit combines using technology (the app), data collection, and analysis to learn about connectivity while being culturally responsive to Montana's Indian Education for All Initiative. The unit culminates with an engineering challenge for student groups to create, share, and present to other career professionals their projects.

Community Presentations

Presentations to communities interesting in participating in the WildlifeXing citizen-science app.

Classroom Presentations

Presentations to high schools participating in WildlifeXing Program.