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Snapshot Wisconsin launches data dashboard open to the public

Published: Oct. 7, 2020 at 2:26 PM CDT
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GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) - After helping the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources capture millions of wildlife photos over the past four years, the public can now interact with the data generated from those pictures.

Snapshot Wisconsin has just launched a data dashboard that’s free and open to the public, and a great example of the benefits of citizen science.

After launching as a pilot program in just two counties in 2016, Snapshot Wisconsin has exploded in popularity.

“Snapshot Wisconsin is a wildlife monitoring program and the idea is that it’s an opportunity for the public to get involved in science and the data that helps the DNR make wildlife management decisions, so volunteers have an opportunity to help post a network of trail cameras across the state that basically takes snapshots of the animals as they pass by,” says Christine Anhalt-Depies, DNR Snapshot Wisconsin Program Coordinator.

To date, more than 47 million trail camera images have been collected through the program.

“There’s no way a project like this could exist without volunteers, we have around 1,800 volunteers across the state who are hosting over 2,100 trail cameras, and we also have thousands more volunteers who are helping to classify the photos that those trail cameras are generating,” says Anhalt-Depies.

Anhalt-Depies says the new data dashboard allows the public to explore the data it helped generate, and interact with nature in a new way.

“The data dashboard is a series of interactive maps and graphs that the public can explore, it has data for 18 different species and you can see the presence and activity patterns of individual species on the dashboard, you can also view data from individual counties or look at data across the entire state and you can even download some of the maps and data sets from the dashboard. This is a great activity to do in the dead of winter or from the comfort of your couch or in front of the fireplace,” says Anhalt-Depies with a smile.

Click here to learn more about Snapshot Wisconsin.

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