Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Participation sought: new citizen science project

21.04.2015

With Chimp&See, scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology (MPI-EVA), the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv) and the Pan African Programme are embarking on a new citizen science project hosted by the online Zooniverse platform. Anyone wishing to help biologists evaluate video sequences taken from camera traps in Africa can find general information and watch short clips at http://www.chimpandsee.org; with a little luck, they will spot chimpanzees and other wild animals.

In celebration of Earth Day on 22 April, a special citizen science project is being launched online in the form of Chimp&See. The platform http://www.chimpandsee.org brings amateur researchers together with scientists and shows the general public just how exciting research can be.


Screenshot Chimp&See

chimpandsee.org

Citizen scientists, as these members of the public are called, can make an invaluable contribution to the study of chimpanzees and other animals in the wild; no previous knowledge is necessary. The amateur researchers simply watch the short clips uploaded to the online platform and name any animals which have been captured by the automatically triggered cameras in the African wilderness. Forest buffalo, duiker or pangolin – describing the animals is not always an easy task.

A digital guide containing reference photos helps the citizen scientists name the animal while also providing fascinating background information. Anyone lucky enough to be the first person to discover a chimpanzee on a video clip can even give it a name.

Chimp&See is based on an effective principle: the higher the number of volunteers participating and providing data on the clips, the greater the hit and description ratio. The sightings will later be evaluated by scientists and collated with the list of animals which have already been identified by other helpers. An open forum also allows volunteers to discuss the project among themselves or to contact experts.

Christophe Boesch, Director at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, hopes that the citizen science initiative will give rise to key momentum in primate research. "With the help of enthusiastic and engaged citizen scientists, this exciting project has the potential to change our understanding of wild chimpanzee ecology", says the behavioural scientist.

Using the analysed data, the experts are looking to draw conclusions on, for example, the spread of prey in the areas examined, any human threat, how the biological and genetic diversity is presented in the biotope and whether some habitats are preferred over others by certain animals.

The research also focuses on the use of tools, which plays a major role for chimpanzees. "We want to find out more about how the primates specifically use tools", says Hjalmar Kühl, head of the research group "Sustainability and Complexity in Ape Habitat" at the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv).

Kühl explains that long-term studies have already shown that chimpanzees use their tools in different ways, even for the same mechanisms involved in catching their prey. Experts are yet to discover how and why this variance has developed.

Anyone interested in the project can take part in Chimp&See. During the start-up phase, around 200,000 videos will be hosted on the online platform, split up into sequences of around 15 seconds each. A further 200,000 clips are planned to be added in the future. The citizen science project will be online until 2017.

Platforms
Chimp&See: http://www.chimpandsee.org
Zooniverse: http://www.zooniverse.org/
Pan African Programme: http://panafrican.eva.mpg.de/

More Information:
Prof. Christophe Boesch
Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology
Phone: +49 (0) 341 3550 200
E-Mail: boesch@eva.mpg.de

Dr. Hjalmar Kühl
German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv) Halle-Jena-Leipzig
Phone: +49 (0) 341 9733 147
E-Mail: hjalmar.kuehl@idiv.de

Press Contact:
Annette Mihatsch
German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv) Halle-Jena-Leipzig
Phone: +49 (0) 341 9733106
E-Mail: presse@idiv.de

Sandra Jacob
Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology
Phone: +49 (0) 341 3550-122
E-Mail:info@eva.mpg.de

Annette Mihatsch | idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft
Further information:
http://www.idiv.de/

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht The birth of a new protein
20.10.2017 | University of Arizona

nachricht Building New Moss Factories
20.10.2017 | Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg im Breisgau

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Neutron star merger directly observed for the first time

University of Maryland researchers contribute to historic detection of gravitational waves and light created by event

On August 17, 2017, at 12:41:04 UTC, scientists made the first direct observation of a merger between two neutron stars--the dense, collapsed cores that remain...

Im Focus: Breaking: the first light from two neutron stars merging

Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.

Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....

Im Focus: Smart sensors for efficient processes

Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).

When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...

Im Focus: Cold molecules on collision course

Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.

How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...

Im Focus: Shrinking the proton again!

Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, using high precision laser spectroscopy of atomic hydrogen, confirm the surprisingly small value of the proton radius determined from muonic hydrogen.

It was one of the breakthroughs of the year 2010: Laser spectroscopy of muonic hydrogen resulted in a value for the proton charge radius that was significantly...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ASEAN Member States discuss the future role of renewable energy

17.10.2017 | Event News

World Health Summit 2017: International experts set the course for the future of Global Health

10.10.2017 | Event News

Climate Engineering Conference 2017 Opens in Berlin

10.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Terahertz spectroscopy goes nano

20.10.2017 | Information Technology

Strange but true: Turning a material upside down can sometimes make it softer

20.10.2017 | Materials Sciences

NRL clarifies valley polarization for electronic and optoelectronic technologies

20.10.2017 | Interdisciplinary Research

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>