Downingtown resident Holly Merker, an environmental educator and an avid birdwatcher, is one of the top contributors to eBird, a new app that helps save birds by tracking their migrations in unprecedented detail, writes Anders Gyllenhaal for The Washington Post.
The app is a part of the eBird project by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. Cornell collects millions of sightings from birdwatchers who use the app to record the location of every species they spot.
The app then computes where birds are throughout the year, how they move, and which species are currently thriving and which are struggling and need help.
In the past several years, more than 400,000 birders have sent in 34 million lists of species. That makes this project the largest citizen-science effort to date.
Last year, Cornell used the accumulated data to launch the amazing animated maps, which bring the migration patterns to life.
For the project to continue being a success, researches are counting on birders to continue submitting their sightings. Merker plans to continue doing her part.
“Why wouldn’t everybody be doing this?” she said. “It can make a real difference.”
Read more about eBird in The Washington Post here.