What is citizen science?
Citizen science happens with volunteers and scientists. It includes data collection, monitoring and research. Anyone can take part in citizen science and be a citizen scientist. You can be part of New Zealand’s biodiversity knowledge and conservation as a citizen scientist.
- For citizen science projects suitable for New Zealand primary students see: pond.co.nz/detail/2556231/citizen-science.
Marine Metre Squared
The Marine Metre Squared (Mm2) project is an example of a marine citizen science project in New Zealand. Question ideas for projects using Mm2 include:
- Do we have any sea stars in our marine reserve?
- Where do limpets prefer to live?
- How many different species can we find in our marine reserve?
- Have shellfish numbers increased since the creation of our marine reserve?
- Are there more large shellfish inside the marine reserve than outside?
- For more ideas and information, visit Marine Metre Squared - www.mm2.net.nz.
With iNaturalistNZ you can share information with science communities. You can put your observations on the inaturalist.nz website. There is also an iNaturalist app. You will need to register at inaturalist.nz/signup before uploading observations.
What else could you investigate in a marine reserve?
Dune plant survey: Survey the dune plants in your marine reserve and see if you can identify them.
- See page 9 of the DOC Habitat Heroes: Explore your local marine environment resource for instructions - www.doc.govt.nz/habitat-heroes-marine-resource.
Litter survey to explore human impacts in your marine reserve.
- See page 10 of the DOC Habitat Heroes: Explore your local marine environment resource page 10 for instructions - www.doc.govt.nz/habitat-heroes-marine-resource.
- Survey sheets and guidance for beach clean-ups and litter audits are available from Love Your Coast/Sustainable Coastlines at www.loveyourcoast.org.nz/learn.
- Ready for a quiz? Try the Citizen Science at Marine Reserves activity.