Calling all Citizen Scientists!
The New Hampshire Fish and Game Department (NHFG) is looking for your help to collect information to help monitor the state’s wildlife populations. Much of what we know of species distributions has been from wildlife observations provided by people like you. The information you provide not only helps us determine species distributions, but also provides us with valuable baseline data that is used to inform research projects. This information contributes towards the protection and further understanding of species habitat needs and is also used to develop habitat management practices that land managers and landowners can adopt to help wildlife on their property.
Maybe you have provided observations in the past? Maybe you haven’t? Maybe you think that you aren’t experienced enough or old enough, or maybe think that you don’t have access to areas to make wildlife observations? We are inviting ALL of you to participate! NHFG has a lot of great information on our website to help you identify the state’s native wildlife species including photographs, detailed species descriptions, and habitat preferences. Observations can come from anywhere - your own backyard, local park, town forest, or camp.
While you are out looking for wildlife, consider documenting vernal pools on your property or in your neighborhood (with landowner permission). Vernal pools are often small, isolated wetlands that are full of water for only part of the year but these features are vital as they provide necessary breeding habitat for species such as wood frogs, spotted salamanders, and many invertebrates. You can record your wildlife and vernal pool observations through our Wildlife Sightings Database online at nhwildlifesightings.unh.edu.
Who knows - maybe you will get lucky and find an endangered species at a new location, like Peter did as detailed in a story we shared a couple of years ago. Check out our story about Peter’s endangered species finding here.
By Melissa Doperalski, NH Fish & Game Department
Spring 2020 Taking Action for Wildlife Newsletter