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Tuesday, April 17 • 9:00am - 9:20am
MANAGING PUBLIC & STAKEHOLDERS: MDIFW’s Citizen Science Web Portal

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AUTHORS: Donald Katnik, Maine Department of Inland Fisheries & Wildlife; Lowell Ballard, Timmons Group

ABSTRACT. Like many state fish and wildlife agencies, Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW) has a Citizen Science (CS) program to increase public interest in our diverse wildlife species and to obtain assistance in surveying populations. Previously this was a paper exercise with data submitted on forms that MDIFW biologists had to manually enter into a database. Besides being inefficient and susceptible to transcription error, this methodology limited how quickly we could provide survey results back to the public. Our new web portal allows the public to discover our CS programs (currently “HERON” and “River Bird”), explore the existing survey data, and volunteer to help. Once vetted, registered Citizen Scientists can log in to record their survey data with easy-to-use data collection forms. This makes it seamless for Citizen Scientists to immediately view their data with other submitted observations. The data is stored in a file geodatabase, leveraging the state’s investment in ESRI GIS software and allowing MDIFW biologists to QC and edit records through ArcGIS Online, which also renders the portal maps. The portal also captures each volunteer’s time and mileage for matching federal funds. The programs are modular within the portal framework, so we can add new ones as needed.

Tuesday April 17, 2018 9:00am - 9:20am EDT
Adirondack B/C

Attendees (4)