Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Crowdsourcing biodiversity watch

Date:
January 9, 2013
Source:
youris.com
Summary:
Following the 2006 ban on sturgeon fishing, the Romanian town of Sfantu Gheorghe, located at the mouth of the Danube river, turned to other income source to replace its fishing based economy. Thus, local children undertook to map out a plant called sea buckthorn, as a first step in forecasting its potential harvest value. Sea buckthorn is a coastal bush which produces yellow berries, typically used in food, beverages and traditional medicine. To achieve their goal, the children used mapping and GPS facilities made available from a crowdsourcing-based biodiversity monitoring initiative called Naturalliance.

Following the 2006 ban on sturgeon fishing, the Romanian town of Sfantu Gheorghe, located at the mouth of the Danube river, turned to other income source to replace its fishing based economy. Thus, local children undertook to map out a plant called sea buckthorn, as a first step in forecasting its potential harvest value. Sea buckthorn is a coastal bush which produces yellow berries, typically used in food, beverages and traditional medicine. To achieve their goal, the children used mapping and GPS facilities made available from a crowdsourcing-based biodiversity monitoring initiative called Naturalliance.

Similarly, many organisations are mapping species across Europe with the help of volunteers. Naturalliance has previously been supported by the EU funded TESS project, and continues to operate since the project ended in 2011. "TESS [assisted] the integration of biodiversity information from the local level into planning and land-use decisions," Stratos Arampatzis said, whereas Naturalliance "is used as to raise awareness, at government level, of the need to talk with local people about the benefits of maintaining and restoring wild resources." Arampatzis is a Manager at a consultancy called Tero, in Thessaloniki, Greece, which is one of the project partners.

Together with its follow-on initiative Naturalliance, the TESS project could become a test case for citizen democracy. "If [such initiatives] help to show the way to bottom-up democracy, starting with the environment, the implications could be large," says Robert Kenward, who runs environment software company Anatrack, Wareham, UK, a TESS project partner. His company has developed mapper for habitats, plants and animals based on photographs.

For such biodiversity monitoring initiatives to be successful, be it for planning, land use decision or ecosystem preservation purposes, however, the key is raising awareness of the need for it among people. "In order to monitor nature, volunteers must be involved. So, the awareness of the public has to be raised and there is a lot to be done in that issue," comments Dimitris Anagnostopoulos a science writer and agronomy PhD researcher specialised in agricultural engineering and natural resource management, at Thessaly University, Volos, Greece. "The state's efforts have to be intensified, especially through education, seminars and workshops. This is how we are going to make people participate," he adds.

Gathering wider support among people can be tricky, however. "We are still seeking the best way to engage communities without embracing large organisations in government and commerce that might swallow us," remarks Kenward.

Convincing people of the importance of their role in biodiversity monitoring may require revisiting its image. Indeed, experts such as Toby Gardner, conservation science researcher at the Department of Zoology, University of Cambridge, UK, believes that biodiversity monitoring and management should be viewed as inherently social processes that are guided by science, but not strictly as scientific activities. Gardner concludes: "without clear recognition of the broader societal context for the monitoring process, and of the conservation values that underlie the monitoring, even the most technically robust monitoring programme will fail."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by youris.com. The original article was written by Menelaos Sotiriou. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

youris.com. "Crowdsourcing biodiversity watch." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 January 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/01/130109185754.htm>.
youris.com. (2013, January 9). Crowdsourcing biodiversity watch. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/01/130109185754.htm
youris.com. "Crowdsourcing biodiversity watch." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/01/130109185754.htm (accessed October 22, 2014).

Share This



More Earth & Climate News

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

San Diego Zoo's White Rhinos Provide Hope for the Critically Endangered Species

San Diego Zoo's White Rhinos Provide Hope for the Critically Endangered Species

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Oct. 22, 2014) — The pair of rare white northern rhinos bring hope for their species as only six remain in the world. Elly Park reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Trick-or-Treating Banned Because of Polar Bears

Trick-or-Treating Banned Because of Polar Bears

Buzz60 (Oct. 21, 2014) — Mother Nature is pulling a trick on the kids of Arviat, Canada. As Mara Montalbano (@maramontalbano) tells us, the effects of global warming caused the town to ban trick-or-treating this Halloween. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Traditional Farming Methods Gaining Ground in Mali

Traditional Farming Methods Gaining Ground in Mali

AFP (Oct. 20, 2014) — He is leading a one man agricultural revolution in Mali - Oumar Diatabe uses traditional farming methods to get the most out of his land and is teaching others across the country how to do the same. Duration: 01:44 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Detroit's Money Woes Led To U.N.-Condemned Water Cutoffs

How Detroit's Money Woes Led To U.N.-Condemned Water Cutoffs

Newsy (Oct. 20, 2014) — The United Nations says water is a human right, but should it be free? Detroit has cut off water to residents who can't pay, and the U.N. isn't happy. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins