Wildlife volunteering online:
Citizen Science Camera Trap Projects
There is a growing base for citizen science projects. If you are interested in wildlife volunteering online, here are a couple of projects you can join. These projects are focused on using citizens to analyse some of their camera trap footage. This is a great way to see nice camera trap pictures and help projects analysing the data. Camera traps are a great way to research areas, and the set up is very cost efficient. On the other hand, all these pictures need to be classified, and your help can be of great conservation value. This is just a basic overview and there are probably more projects available, don’t hesitate to get in contact if you know some other projects.
Snapshot Serengeti and Camera CATalogue have similar frameworks with a nice About section, a Classify section, and a more community section for making a profile and participate in a forum. Both projects make use of an easy to follow manual and created a guide to identify animals with colour, patterns, horns, and more to make identifying easier.
Snapshot Serengeti is a project from the Serengeti Lion Project. It’s one of the longest-running citizen science-based projects online regarding camera trap data and is definitely worth checking out. As the name might suggest, this project is based in Tanzania. They have a camera trap grid of 225 camera traps, which allows them to study over 30 different species. Find out more about the project, or start classifying straight away. I will advice making a profile as well.
The Camera CATalogue – Panthera
Panthera is focussed on protecting cat species. The Camera CATalogue is part of their ongoing monitoring of different areas. Camera traps are a great way to study cats, but also any other creatures living in those valuable areas. Additionally, to the identification process with patterns, colour, and such, they have an easily accessible field guide with some additional tips, based on continent and what’s on the picture (snout, legs, bums, …). They have pictures from different places, including Central America, Southern Africa, and Southeast Asia. Start Classifying…
eMammals – See Wildlife, Do Science
It’s an upcoming project. As far as I could find on their website it’s not possible to only help classify. Check out their general website. One of there Projects is the North Carolina’s Candid Critters, where you can log in and upload your own camera trap data. You can also just go there and look at camera trap footage. For more information, there is also a scientific paper available.
These online projects are a nice way to give some of your time to conservation. Additionally, you get to watch some nice camera trap pictures. Another article about these citizen science camera trap projects you can find here. You can find other projects you can contribute to online on the Zooniverse website. If you would just like to enjoy some of the worldwide wildlife, check out my post about 5 best live wildlife cameras.