National News

Phytoplankton rapidly disappearing from the Indian Ocean

A rapid loss of phytoplankton threatens to turn the western Indian Ocean into an “ecological desert,” a new study warns. The research reveals that phytoplankton populations in the region fell an alarming 30 percent over the last 16 years.  A decline in ocean mixing due to warming surface waters is to blame for that phytoplankton plummet, researchers propose in Geophysical Research Letters.  Read the full story in Science News.

Can citizen science empower disenfranchised communities?

Over the past few years, there’s been an explosion of opportunities for ordinary people to collect data for researchers, and sometimes help analyze it. Platforms such as Zooniverse, Scientific American and SciStarter are all helping citizens (anyone who’s part of a community, in this context) connect with scientists and get involved with the process of scientific discovery. Read the full story here.

What is Citizen Science Good For?

No matter how unhip you feel wearing waders or hauling a butterfly net, citizen science is cool. That’s obvious from the boom in online projects that let you count penguins, hunt planets, or identify animals in the Serengeti, as well as the scientific papers using these data. Now researchers in Sweden have looked into the science of citizen science itself. How much of this volunteer research is really happening ...

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