We are constantly striving to improve the Ontario Reptile and Amphibian Atlas and are currently in the process of revamping the smartphone app. The new version of the app will include interactive features that allow users to see when their record has been accepted and when certain records require more information. While we are working on making these updates, the app is currently “out of order.” In the meantime, all records can be submitted using the online online form. Thank you for your patience as we are working on these changes.
Send in your data for 2016!
With the arrival of autumn we are sad to see the herping season come to a close. To assist us with updating our database and online maps, please send us your reptile and amphibian sightings from this year by November 30. Large data sets can be submitted using our Excel template while single records can be submitted using the online form. If you have records saved in the old app that haven’t been submitted yet, they will need to be entered using the online form. The total number of verified submissions entered from January to September 2016, using the online form and app online is 1,676 – that’s 592 new records since our July newsletter!
Engaging youth in salamander monitoring
To promote citizen science and the herp atlas, our staff participated in Ontario Nature’s 7th annual Youth Summit for Biodiversity and Environmental Leadership held on Lake Couchiching. A total of 107 youth from across the province were registered in this year’s summit. Atlas staff led two workshops focused on monitoring salamanders for 41 youth participants who recorded 40 new records to the atlas including 35 eastern red-backed salamanders, 1 ribbonsnake, 1 green frog, 1 snapping turtle and 2 northern leopard frogs.
New Directory of Ontario Citizen Science
This summer Ontario Nature was fortunate to have two dedicated and hardworking volunteer interns from York University, Lynn Miller and Allison Nicholls, to assist with various atlas projects. Lynn helped develop evaluation materials for our summer outreach events and compiled these results. Allison helped research for the upcoming ORAA publication as well as launching the new Directory of Ontario Citizen Science. We are indebted to Lynn and Allison for their help moving these projects forward!
Interested in volunteering for Ontario Nature and the ORAA? You can find out more information by emailing: firstname.lastname@example.org.