How can museums advance citizen science? The City Nature Challenge makes evident at least three themes: First, a belief that “science is open to all” is consistent with museums’ values of inclusivity and access. Second, museums know partnerships. (To realize this competitive bioblitz event, the California Academy of Sciences and the Natural History Museum of…

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Abstract: Life history trait analyses of non-native fishes help identify how novel populations respond to different habitat typologies. Here, using electric fishing and anglers as citizen scientists, scales were collected from the invasive barbel Barbus barbus population from four reaches of the River Severn and Teme, western England. Angler samples were biased towards larger fish,…

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One goal of citizen science is to encourage dissemination of citizen-made observations and knowledge gained about the interactions between the human-made and natural environments—even if that knowledge makes us uncomfortable in confronting  potentially damaging cultural traditions. Here we see something as seemingly innocent as a celebratory balloon release can have disastrous consequences. — LFF — Excerpt:…

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Excerpt: Whale sharks are the largest fish in the world and can grow to more than 40 feet long and more than 65,000 pounds. Despite their massive size, they are harmless “filter feeders” that move slowly through tropical waters, scooping up plankton with gaping mouths. (A)lthough whale sharks are gentle and easy-to-see, they are also…

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“There’s no plan(et) B” we saw on many of the recent signs on Earth Day marches; however there may be a Planet Nine! Thanks to tens of thousands of citizen scientists who logged four years worth of effort in just three days, there are now four Planet Nine candidates for follow-up. That’s real people-powered research….

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Abstract: With around 3,200 tigers (Panthera tigris) left in the wild, the governments of 13 tiger range countries recently declared that there is a need for innovation to aid tiger research and conservation. In response to this call, we created the “Think for Tigers” study to explore whether crowdsourcing has the potential to innovate the…

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Editor’s Choice: Biological observations require patience. Biological conservation calls for urgency. When citizen science works in concert with national policy, it allows us to coordinate slow and rapid paced efforts. This is necessary to gain traction on challenging issues. For specific actions you can take to help the rusty patched bumble bee, read the species…

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Abstract: From 2013 to 2015, citizen scientist volunteers in Toronto, Canada were trained to collect and analyze water quality in urban stormwater ponds. This volunteer sampling was part of the research program, FreshWater Watch (FWW), which aimed to standardize urban water sampling efforts from around the globe. We held training sessions for new volunteers twice…

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Excerpt: A dozen MIT students and community members clamber into a van on a bright morning in late January. There’s palpable excitement as the van drives down Main Street in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and crosses onto Portland Street. The chilly weather and light snow does nothing to dampen the group’s spirits. They’re on a hunt —…

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Abstract: Global changes to fish distributions are expected to continue in coming decades with predicted increases in ocean temperatures and the frequency of extreme climatic events. In the eastern Indian Ocean during the 2010/11 summer, sea surface temperatures 4–5 °C above average and an unseasonal, anomalously strong, Leeuwin Current (LC) triggered a “marine heatwave” along…

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