Birds Canada Challenge

About Birds Canada

Birds Canada is a non-profit, charitable organization built on the enthusiastic contributions of thousands of caring members and volunteer Citizen Scientists with the mission to conserve wilds birds through sound science, on-the-ground actions, innovative partnerships, public engagement, and science-based advocacy!Data (observations) collected by Citizen Scientists, alongside targeted research projects, are used to identify significant bird population changes and help direct conservation planning.

Their challenge

NatureCounts, a service managed by Birds Canada, is one of the largest biodiversity database repositories of its kind. The primary focus of NatureCounts is the collection of standardized effort-based monitoring data on Canadian birds collected by >60,000 citizen science volunteers. Many of these datasets are publicly accessible through an open-source R software package, naturecounts. However, R functionalities are not yet available to quickly summarize these data in meaningful ways for data users. Our challenge is for hackathoners to develop package functionalities or GUIs (either on the data exploration side or the data request side) that enable visual and/or tabular summations of the data in meaningful ways (e.g.,mapping observations, relative observation trends, generating species list for specific areas). All collections in naturecounts use a standard data format (BMDE), so they could be summarized together or separately across various temporal or spatial scales. The opportunities are endless! Be creative and have fun. Source code for the naturecounts R package can be found here. General instructions on how to use the naturecounts R package can be found here or here.

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