Pest monitoring by curious minds

May 20, 2016

Dragonfly has combined forces with the Otago Peninsula Biodiversity Group to teach primary-school children how to monitor pests in the Dunedin area.

Through funding by a grant from Curious Minds, Katrin and Chris will work with the Otago Peninsula Biodiversity Group (OPBG) to engage pupils in the monitoring of possum and rodent populations in their local environments.

By providing monitoring kits to participating schools and families, OPBG is enabling children to actively collect data on pest animals. At the same time, children learn about the importance of this information for the protection of biodiversity.

Dragonfly's involvement focuses on the development of a data entry system that engages primary-school children and provides instant feedback on their monitoring efforts.

"We are hoping to make the data side of things easy, so that children see the benefits of providing their data. For example, they will be able to make direct comparisons with other schools", Katrin says.

"It'll be exciting to work with children on this project, and to be part of their learning about pest monitoring and biodiversity."

The project starts in June 2016, with the data collection by school children in spring.

Contact Katrin Berkenbusch for more information about this project.