To save you time and money, we have downloaded and tested the apps listed below. From whale songs to nudibranchs, from sustainable fish guides to mangrove identification, there is something for everyone…from snorkeler to scientist.
Good quality photos and well done eBook for “Young Explorers” highlighting the difference in habitats and species within a kelp forest.
We understand that the Monterey Bay Aquarium needs to talk about the kelp forests on the west coast of North America, but if you are going to make an eBook, it would be nice to at least mention kelp forests in other parts of the world.
Well designed app that explains how to hunt for eggcases, how to identify them (ID guide for species found in the UK species), and how to prepare them to take ID photos to upload with the app. The aim of the project is to identify where different species of oviparous (egg laying) shark, ray, and skate species lay their eggs. For more information see www.eggcase.org.
Originally designed for the UK, the eggcase identification is limited. It does allow you to upload data from other parts of the world. An international version covering more species would be appreciated.
The basic version working from free maps gives enough detail to do field work. Easy to mark pathways, boundaries, or monitoring points. Can record photos and notes with waypoints. Great for monitoring work in mangroves, seagrass, etc.
Requires a bit of practice using it before heading to the field.
Very easy-to-use seagrass identification guide based on the region you select. It is relatively easy to upload a report.
The app was recently updated to cover the world – an example for other apps to follow.
Simple to use tool that makes it easy for snorkelers and divers to assess coral bleaching and health based on a colour chart (20,000 already distributed). Data collected can be entered into the app and uploaded to the CoralWatch database. Information about how to use the chart is available in a companion ReefWatch app in Indonesian and English. The CoralWatch Do-It-Yourself Kit and Datasheets are available for free in Indonesian, English, traditional & simplified Chinese, Korean, Arabic, Portuguese, Japanese, Spanish, French, Italian, and German on their website.
Nice tool to interest and involve people in coral health. The research team continues to develop and improve the entire CoralWatch package.
Easy to register. Reporting system has a short and long version that is very easy to understand. You can add photos and correct your data before uploading.
It would be nice to know what happens to the data that is collected and uploaded.
This water quality application uses the smartphone’s camera to determine the reflectance of water bodies. HydroColor can estimate water turbidity (0-80 NTU), concentration of suspended particulate matter (SPM) (g/m^3) and the backscattering coefficient in the red (1/m). The data files are save automatically and can be downloaded on a computer in a text file the information about the measurement: latitude, longitude, date, time, sun zenith, sun azimuth, phone heading, phone pitch, exposure values, RGB reflectance, and turbidity.
Very cool app that provides good data. For more information about the app, see their webpage.
Information for each species is provided such as the rating explanation, bio summary, capture/production information, and “management”.
Not eating seafood. There are 5 different ratings and the colours that correspond give a more positive assessment then the actual words. Information on fishing methods and seasonality is a link to their website. Recipes are provided. It is not clear if they are encouraging seafood consumption or trying to limit unsustainable consumption.
The colour-coding make the app simple to use. Good information provided for each species with map showing source locations. Easy to understand list of definitions. The Australian Marine Conservation Society appears to maintain more objective measures than some other organisations in other countries.
Not eating fish.