Abstract: Pokémon Go, an augmented reality (AR) smartphone game, replicates many aspects of real-world wildlife watching and natural history by allowing players to find, capture, and collect Pokémon, which are effectively virtual animals. In this article, we consider how the unprecedented success of Pokémon Go as a smartphone game might create opportunities and challenges for…

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Excerpt: Turning meadow restoration into cleaner air is the goal of researchers at the University of Nevada, Reno. The Soil Science Laboratory at the University recently partnered with the Earthwatch Institute, an international citizen science research organization, to better understand how restoration and plant communities relate to the soil carbon in Sierra Nevada mountain meadows….

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Editor’s Choice:  This work makes an excellent case for strategic interplay between citizen science projects and monitoring biodiversity by remote sensing. By combining the power of each method, greater gains can be made on critical biodiversity and conservation goals.  –LFF– Abstract: To meet collective obligations towards biodiversity conservation and monitoring, it is essential that the world’s governments and…

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Editor’s Choice: I picked this video for two reasons (1) because iNaturalist is a great platform and Mary Ellen Hannibal eloquently explains why platforms such as iNaturalist are key tools for conservation science and (2) because this is a link to a YouTube video, I wanted to highlight the point of Citizen Science Today as…

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Abstract: Recent freshwater policy reforms in New Zealand promote increased community involvement in freshwater decision making and management. Involving community members in scientific monitoring increases both their knowledge and their ability to discuss this knowledge with professionals, potentially increasing their influence in decision-making processes. However, these interactions rarely occur because, in particular, of perceptions that…

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Editor’s Choice: Often cited as the longest-running citizen science effort, the Christmas Bird Count (CBC) returns next week for its 117th season. This article illustrates the excitement of a particular, local community, while also depicting the bigger picture of CBC’s longevity, global scalability, and relevance to conservation. Taking this opportunity to reflect on CBC’s legacy, here is a…

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Editor’s Choice: This article is an excellent overview for a dedicated issue of 20 articles in Biological Conservation on the ever-expanding role of citizen science in that arena. Section 5 in particular has some thoughtful recommendations on next steps. — LFF — Abstract: Research taking place at the intersection of conservation and citizen science holds great potential…

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Abstract: It is a hard reality that virtually all countries, no matter how well resourced, take conservation and land use decisions based on highly patchy and imperfect data – if indeed any data at all. Despite a mushrooming of scientific evidence and journals in the past decade, and open-access provision of many expensive global datasets,…

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Abstract: Urbanization is widespread throughout the United States and Canada. Studies at different scales have shown mixed consequences of urban areas for ecological communities and biodiversity. Here, we use geographic data on urban extent and survey data from the Christmas Bird Count to investigate the influence of urbanization on winter bird diversity over a continental…

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This is what I love about citizen science. Because of its distributed nature, the sorts of questions that can be tackled are as varied as the multitude of ways in which humans commonly interact with the world around them. So it shouldn’t be surprising that we can use citizen science to gather data on the behavior…

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