April was Citizen Science Month
Citizen Science Month (presented by SciStarter.org) is an annual effort in April focusing on all things citizen science: amazing discoveries, incredible volunteers, inspiring projects, and anything else citizen science-related!
Keeping yourself and others safe during the COVID-19 pandemic is the #1 priority. Fortunately, there are many opportunities for conducting safe citizen science to fight disease, track migratory birds, study animal behavior, and more...collaboratively.
World Wide and National citizen science projects
zooniverse.org the world’s largest and most popular platform for people-powered research. They have a wide-ranging and ever-expanding suite of projects, covering many disciplines and topics across the sciences and humanities, there's a place for anyone and everyone to explore, learn and have fun in the Zooniverse.
scistarter.org is an online community dedicated to improving the citizen science experience for project managers and participants. Over 3,000 projects and events are searchable by location, scientific topic, and age level, and by joining SciStarter, members can track their contributions and provide valuable feedback.
iNaturalist.org is a joint initiative of the California Academy of Sciences and the National Geographic Society. Multiple projects involving worldwide biodiversity observations.
Hundreds of thousands of people around the world contribute bird observations to the Cornell Lab of Ornithology each year, gathering data on a scale once unimaginable. If you enjoy watching birds, contribute your passion to help science and conservation, whether by watching birds at your feeders, monitoring nests, or sharing your sightings any time, anywhere.
science.nasa.gov/citizenscience NASA’s citizen science projects are collaborations between scientists and interested members of the public. Through these collaborations, volunteers (known as citizen scientists) have helped make thousands of important scientific discoveries.
Smithsonian researchers enlist volunteers for an array of tasks, both onsite and online. Depending on your interests, you can help sustain species around the globe and even solve mysteries of the planets and stars!
This searchable database provides a government-wide listing of citizen science and crowdsourcing projects designed to improve cross-agency collaboration, reveal opportunities for new high-impact projects, and make it easier for volunteers to find out about projects they can join.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service list of projects. Citizen science is an important contribution to research – it is a partnership between the public and scientists that help answer questions scientists couldn’t possibly collect and answer all on their own.
GLOBE Observer invites you to make environmental observations that complement NASA satellite observations to help scientists studying Earth and the global environment.
Earth Challenge 2020 is the world’s largest ever coordinated citizen science campaign. The initiative integrates existing citizen science projects and builds capacity for new ones — all to grow citizen science worldwide. Using mobile technology and open citizen science data, Earth Challenge 2020 empowers people around the world to monitor and mitigate threats to environmental and human health in their communities.
Michigan based citizen science projects
Eyes on the Forest program relies on volunteers like you to monitor Sentinel Trees across the state for signs of invasive forest pests.
Report an observation of an endangered, threatened or special concern species in Michigan through this site.
Want to get involved with helping pollinators? There are a variety of citizen science projects that can use your help.
The Vernal Pool Patrol is a statewide vernal pool mapping and monitoring program that was launched in 2012 to help address this need. Help identify and map locations of vernal pools in their local communities, and collect information about them. If you would like to learn more about these fascinating wetlands, and enjoy spending time outside in nature and participating in science and conservation, this program is for you! Training will be provided!
MI-MAST is a program where YOU get to understand wildlife foods in areas you are interested in while playing an important role in the conservation of Michigan’s wildlife. Understanding the cycles of wild fruit and seeds that are produced by trees and shrubs, also called mast, is a critical component of understanding wildlife habitat and population performance. Mast crops are known to directly affect wildlife productivity and survival, hence knowing more about wildlife food sources can help you locate more wildlife. Additionally, biologists need mast information across the entire state of Michigan to fully understand how wildlife populations might be responding to masting.
Southwest Michigan Bees is a community science program from Kalamazoo College collecting data on bumble bee species abundance and diversity. Community science means that all community members are welcome to submit photos. We need the help of volunteers to help cover more ground. Volunteering is a great way to commit to the betterment of our local ecosystem while enjoying all it has to offer. SWMBees will focus on collecting data from the nine counties of Southwest Michigan: Allegan, Barry, Berrien, Branch, Calhoun, Cass, Kalamazoo, St. Joseph, and Van Buren. Special interest for a current project is given to the Southwest Michigan Land Conservancy nature preserves in these counties and the Kalamazoo College Lillian Anderson Arboretum.
Citizen science is integral to Michigan Audubon’s efforts to provide data that help identify threats to bird populations and habitat. This research data, collected by volunteers, leads to programs and policies designed to protect species and the habitats in which they live.
The Michigan Butterfly Network's primary function is a citizen science based butterfly monitoring initiative involving partner cities across the state. Since 2012, citizen scientists (people like you!) have been gathering vital data on our local butterfly populations. Monitoring butterfly populations over several years allows us to better understand butterfly ecology, population changes, and to direct attention to species in decline before it is too late.
HRWC volunteers are vital to moving our mission forward. As a volunteer, you will work with fun, like-minded locals to help us collect samples and data that we will use to advocate for the health of Huron River Watershed.
CrowdHydrology was established in 2010 with the goal of using innovative methods to collect spatially distributed hydrologic data. What began in the Northeast United States has expanded across the continent. Our hope is that we will soon be able to offer global support to those seeking to aid the study of hydrologic data worldwide.
The purpose of the Michigan Herp Atlas Project is to collect observation data about Michigan's native amphibians and reptiles (collectively known as herpetofauna or "herps") so we can document their distribution and changes in their populations statewide. Record your own past and present observations to help assess changes in populations over time and measure species health.
MSU Regrow Milkweed for Monarchs: A Citizen Science Study! What does it mean to ReGrow Milkweed for Monarchs? When common milkweed stems are cut back during the summer, they produce new growth within a few weeks. These regrowing stems attract egg laying monarch butterflies and may be a safer environment for monarch eggs and caterpillars. The purpose of this citizen science experiment is to test this technique as a strategy to improve monarch butterfly habitat. You can find everything you need to know to participate in this project on this website. You may also find us on twitter @RegrowMilkweed and our Facebook Page @MSUReGrowMilkweed
Also check out these pages for more ways to get involved!