Is Rainwater Safe to Drink? Runoff Collected by Volunteers Offers Clues

Life on Earth needs water to survive. Yet, drinkable water is a rapidly dwindling resource. Out of all the water on our planet, only 2.5 percent is freshwater. And of that 2.5 percent, just 0.3 percent is readily accessible as surface water. According to FreshWaterWatch, by the year 2050, half of the world’s population will … Read more “Is Rainwater Safe to Drink? Runoff Collected by Volunteers Offers Clues”

Categories: Climate & Weather

Museums are Full of Forgotten Treasures. You Can Help Find Them

Around the world, in thousands of museums, there are millions of specimens representing the known biological diversity of our world. Each one of those specimens is a physical snapshot of time, prepared and preserved by a collector in a carefully curated collection. They’re often pressed in the pages of books, sketched into drawings and notes, … Read more “Museums are Full of Forgotten Treasures. You Can Help Find Them”

Categories: Citizen Science, Ecology & Environment

How Bad is Light Pollution in Your Community? Find Out by Helping the ‘Globe at Night’ Project

Nothing beats a beautifully clear, starry night. But in many places around the world, light pollution is hiding the twinkling stars from our view. Light pollution comes from artificial outdoor lights like street lamps, stadium lights, and porch lights. Nearly three-quarters of city dwellers have never seen a pristine dark sky and many don’t know … Read more “How Bad is Light Pollution in Your Community? Find Out by Helping the ‘Globe at Night’ Project”

Categories: Astronomy & Space

Saving California’s Seals and Sea Lions

We tend to think of famine in human terms. But animal populations also experience wide-spread hunger, and the hundreds of emaciated young seals and sea lions stranded on California beaches in the past year were a poignant example. Fortunately, a large team of citizen scientists at The Marine Mammal Center—an animal hospital and research institute … Read more “Saving California’s Seals and Sea Lions”

Categories: Animals, Citizen Science, Nature & Outdoors, Ocean & Water, Project Profile

Just Add Water: World Water Monitoring Challenge 2013 Results

The World Water Monitoring Challenge results are out! Earlier this year, I found myself hanging over a concrete ledge by the Charles River. But not to worry – it was nothing dire. I was actually trying to collect a water sample for the World Water Monitoring Challenge. Talk about diving headfirst into citizen science. On … Read more “Just Add Water: World Water Monitoring Challenge 2013 Results”

Categories: Asking questions (for science) and defining problems (for engineering), Citizen Science, Constructing explanations (for science) and designing solutions (for engineering), Ecology & Environment, Nature & Outdoors, Obtaining, evaluating, and communicating information, Planning and carrying out investigations

Recording The Noise Scape of Your Life with NoiseTube

NoiseTube allows citizen scientists to monitor noise pollution with a mobile app. Come to your senses! SciStarter has curated a list of projects for all 5 senses. I was overjoyed the first time I heard the peaceful fountain, twittering bird song, and gentle rustle of wind through the trees oustide my office window. Then, one … Read more “Recording The Noise Scape of Your Life with NoiseTube”

Categories: Apps, Citizen Science, Do-It-Yourself

Just Add Water: Why Water Monitoring is Important

Today is World Water Monitoring Day! Participate by ordering a test kit and submitting sample data through December of this year. Also, check out the ocean of other water citizen science projects on SciStarter. Here at SciStarter, we spend a lot of time supporting citizen science, but we also happen to be citizen scientists ourselves. In the … Read more “Just Add Water: Why Water Monitoring is Important”

Categories: Chemistry, Citizen Science, Climate & Weather, Ecology & Environment, In the News, Nature & Outdoors, Ocean & Water, Science Education Standards

Monitoring Water Quality

This post is part of this week’s  featured projects about water quality monitoring. Take a look! Clean water. We all need it. It is necessary for human health, food security, economic growth, and preservation of natural habitats. Sadly, human activity often threatens water quality. Tracking water quality is a crucial step is maintaining safe water. … Read more “Monitoring Water Quality”

Categories: Citizen Science

The Secchi Dip-In

Calling all water monitoring groups! It is time for the annual Secchi Dip-In. From now until July 22, volunteer and professional water monitoring groups are being asked to take transparency measurements in a local body of water. A secchi disk is a common tool for measuring water turbidity, or water cloudiness. Turbidity is caused by … Read more “The Secchi Dip-In”

Categories: Citizen Science, Ecology & Environment, Geology & Earth Sciences, Nature & Outdoors, Ocean & Water

Help keep the crawdads from taking over!

Some of you may have fond memories of summers spent kneeling by nearby streams, peering intently for crayfish to play with (or cook up for dinner!). These tiny, lobster-like creatures are a staple of freshwater ecosystems, southern menus, and even neuroscience classes. (No kidding — I learned about action potentials from a wonderful college professor … Read more “Help keep the crawdads from taking over!”

Categories: Animals, Biology, Citizen Science, Ecology & Environment, Nature & Outdoors, Ocean & Water