SUFB 3: Citizen Science Using Secchi Disks – with Dr. Richard Kirby



Speak Up For Blue PodcastCitizen Science is very crucial for the future of ocean science and conservation. As scientists, we depend on ocean data to monitor the state of various aspects of the Ocean. It helps us determine whether ocean habitats are changing (for better or for worse) as well as the state of ocean species (often dependent on the state of ocean habitats). What is Citizen Science? Well it’s a process whereby non-scientists help scientists conduct studies. In our case, we will focus on non-scientists conducting science studies to monitor the Oceans. It’s my opinion that citizen science play a dominant role in monitoring the oceans. The oceans are so big it makes i difficult to monitor all aspects of the ocean, especially when there are so few scientists and conservationists. Employing the use of scientists makes it more plausible to cover more ground. Today’s technology allows us to relay information great distances to analyze all together. It makes it a perfect formula for conducting citizen science. That is why I asked today’s Speak Up For Blue Podcast guest to come on the show to tell you about his team’s Citizen Science project. His project needs citizen scientists to go out and sample water clarity of the oceans all around the world. Dr. Richard Kirby is a Marine Scientist at the Plymouth Marine Laboratory in the UK who is heading the Secchi Disk Citizen Science program. The program consists of a mobile app called The Secchi Disk app that helps citizen scientists construct a secchi disk and collect crucial information on water quality of the Oceans around the world. The information is sent back to Dr. Kirby so that his team can analyze the data. The Secchi Disk App is complete with information on the project, instructions on how to construct a Secchi Disk from household items and how to use the disk, record the data, and send it back to Dr. Kirby’s team. Check out the interview with Dr. Richard Kirby as he describes the project and it’s importance.

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