Do you live in British Columbia? Do you have a smartphone? Then you can become a ‘citizen scientist.’

The idea is simple: download the iNaturalist App and upload photos of species you encounter while exploring parks in British Columbia this summer.

photoKelly Fretwell, BC Parks Foundation

Then, a community of keen citizen scientists confirm the identity of species that have been documented. They help correct errors and ensure as many observations are research grade as possible. As a bonus, you get to learn more about the world around you—and what you’re really seeing on an outdoor adventure.

“iNaturalist serves as your very own personal nature interpreter—you take a photo on your phone, have the app scan the photo with its powerful artificial intelligence, and it will suggest a species ID for you,” said University of Victoria’s Dr. Brian Starzomski, project co-lead. “Even better, you become a citizen scientist when you upload your observation to iNaturalist, where it will be automatically added to the BC Parks project, creating a massive new inventory of biodiversity information for all British Columbians,” he notes.

photo Lena Dietz Chiasson, BC Parks iNaturalist Project

Within the BC Parks iNaturalist project, more than 67,000 observations of over 4,200 species have been catalogued by over 1,600 observers. This summer alone, the teams have recorded more than 25,000 observations of over 1,800 species through iNaturalist.

Want to get involved? Visit bcparksfoundation.ca/inaturalist to learn more.

 

  

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