The ClimateWatch program is the collaborative brainchild of Earthwatch Australia, the Bureau of Meteorology and the University of Melbourne to understand how changes in temperature and rainfall are affecting the seasonal behaviour of Australia's plants and animals. The first continental phenology project in the Southern Hemisphere, ClimateWatch enables every Australian to be involved in collecting and recording data that will help shape the country’s scientific response to climate change.
ClimateWatch aims to understand the effects climate change is having on Earth's natural processes. Essentially, the project research is based on phenology, the study of periodic events in biological life cycles and how seasonal and year-to-year variations influence these in climate. Many studies already provided insight into the relationship between climate variables and the timing of these phenophases. By contributing their observations to the ClimateWatch App, Citizen Scientists are taking direct action to make a positive difference to the Climate crisis.
Our mission was to redesign the ClimateWatch App completely. The new Citizen Science App comes with a wide range of advanced features, integrated tools and enhanced functionality including interactive maps and social motivation for users with regular updates and high useability. Every app on SPOTTERON can use all existing features of the Citizen Science platform without any additional development costs. Future updates will see Species profiles and images to assist with identification and expanded Trails features. These new features are provided then again for free to every running project.
ClimateWatch Australia selected around 180 indicator species that are affected by the Climate crisis and need to be monitored. An indicator species is an organism whose presence, absence, or abundance reflects a specific environmental condition. Together with the scientists behind ClimateWatch we created a detailed 'Add-Spot-Dialogue', which recognises all the important data, according to the different species of mammals, birds, insects, amphibians, plants, marines, reptiles and spiders. Therefore we designed custom detail buttons for every species to make the user-experience inviting and accessible throughout the whole questionnaire.
You can see the project website here: https://www.climatewatch.org.au
Web-App for the browser: https://www.spotteron.com/climatewatch