Here are a few citizen science opportunities happening around Rhode Island:
Osprey Monitoring: This is a statewide monitoring program where over 100 volunteer citizen scientists learn about Osprey, how to identify them and then put their knowledge to use as they observe the nest and record the Osprey’s breeding success via an online form. Audubon provides the training and the data collection is self-scheduled from April - August. The data captured each year is shared with scientists, the general public and government agencies throughout the United States. In fact, Audubon’s program was found to be one of the longest running and best for capturing data!
Follow this link to more information: www.riosprey.info
Osprey Nest Assessments: This project is linked to the Osprey Monitoring project. During the Fall and Winter, citizen scientists locate Osprey nests and report back on the type of nest site, the condition and location of each nest. They also photograph each nest.
Contact Jon Scoones at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Butterfly Count: This project relies on over 40 citizen scientists to observe and record butterfly species at predetermined locations across Rhode Island. Audubon’s annual program feeds data into the North American Butterfly Association’s citizen science data from observations made across the country!
To learn more about this citizen science project follow this link: www.butterflyingwithaudubon.blogspot.com.
Bluebird Box Monitoring: Another annual Audubon project, citizen scientists monitor the bluebird boxes in assigned locations across the state. Citizen scientists observe the boxes on a regular basis throughout the summer and relay their observations back to Audubon. The data that is compiled is then shared with scientists, universities and birding enthusiasts.
Rhode Island Bird Atlas 2.0: Although not administered by Audubon, this 28 year-old project is supported by 60+ volunteers who observe birds across the state, providing over 9,000 records of breeding behavior.
To learn more about this citizen science project follow this link: www.ribirdatlas.com
Saltmarsh Sparrow Research Initiative: Audubon is a partner to this initiative which is conducting a 5-year study of the Saltmarsh Sparrow in Warren, RI salt marshes (adjacent to Audubon’s Claire D. McIntosh Wildlife Refuge). Project Directors lead a team of Citizen Scientists in executing studies of the Saltmarsh Sparrow, considered by some as “the canary of the salt marsh” due to its vulnerability to rising sea levels. Learn more about volunteer opportunities at www.SALSri.org, or email SaltmarshSparrowRI@gmail.com.