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Wildlife Health Event Reporter

Wildlife Health Event Reporter

The Wildlife Health Event Reporter (WHER) is an experimental tool that hopes to harness the power of the many eyes of the public to better detect these changes. WHER is part of the Wildlife Health Monitoring Network, a Web-based open source system with interchangeable modules that support data entry, storage, reporting, analysis and exchange in collaboration with many partners, including the U.S. Geological Survey National Wildlife Health Center, University of Wisconsin Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies and University of Wisconsin Division of Information Technology (DoIT).

Currently in a public Beta release, WHER is a Web-based application launched to record wildlife observations by citizens concerned about dead or sick wildlife. After being recorded, these observations are joined with other wildlife sightings and are viewable in tabular reports or on a map, enabling people to see where similar events are happening. Natural resource managers, researchers, and public health officials use this information to protect the well-being of all living things and promote a healthy ecosystem.

Project Details

  • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Joshua Dein
  • SCIENTIST AFFILIATION: U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) National Wildlife Health Center
  • DATES: Ongoing
  • PROJECT TYPE: Observation
  • COST: Free
  • GRADE LEVEL: All Ages
  • TIME COMMITMENT: Variable
  • HOW TO JOIN:

    Individuals can help with this wildlife health surveillance effort by reporting their sightings of sick/dead wild animals to WHER. After creating an account, users can enter their observations. The system will guide them step by step through the process. Data such as date and location, species of animal(s) involved, actions taken and any additional event observations are recorded.

See more projects in FreeObservationAll Ages.

What Is Citizen Science?

Research often involves teams of scientists collaborating across continents. Now, using the power of the Internet, non-specialists are participating, too. Citizen Science falls into many categories. A pioneering project was SETI@Home, which has harnessed the idle computing time of millions of participants in the search for extraterrestrial life. Citizen scientists also act as volunteer classifiers of heavenly objects, such as in Galaxy Zoo. They make observations of the natural world, as in The Great Sunflower Project. And they even solve puzzles to design proteins, such as FoldIt. We'll add projects regularly—and please tell us about others you like as well.

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