Waterwatch QLD – A New Regional Citizen Science Project
The Waterwatch program was successfully facilitated by Natura Education from 2009 to 2016. During this time we connected with over 250,000 students, teachers and members of the community to share with them the values of fresh water environments and our catchments. We would like to see it continue!
Benefits of the Waterwatch program to children and the wider community have included an increased appreciation for maintaining and improving waterways, understanding of scientific methods and data collection, learning to identify animals and plants found along our waterways, hands-on replanting of riparian vegetation, enjoyment of working outdoors, social media interaction and competitions.
Now we are now very excited to be looking to expand Waterwatch into a more regional program in Queensland.
With 14 major river catchments in the South East Queensland bioregion alone, our state as a whole is a place governed by the importance and presence of fresh water. Natura Education is now wanting to take Waterwatch to a new level by incorporating an app platform that allows schools and community groups across Queensland to record and monitor water physiochemical properties, macro-invertebrate diversity and habitat condition in their local waterways.
The importance of monitoring our State’s water should not just fall to Government scientists, we have an opportunity for many generations of Queenslanders to work together to preserve our water, and develop a sense of patronage over it that itself, lends to its future health and persistence.
There is potential for huge achievement and growth in this program. We would welcome ideas on funding, collaboration and dissemination of the app product from interest bodies such as local government.