Project: Penguin Watch
It’s cold in Antarctica. I mean really cold. The mean temperatures of the coldest months are −20 to −30 °C on the coast and −40 to −94 −40 to −70 °C in the interior; the best summer time temperature you can hope for on the coast is around 0°C. As you can imagine, it’s not an easy place to do research; in addition to the extreme temperatures and remoteness, it’s also very ecologically sensitive.
That’s why scientists want to make the most out of information collected from the region, and why they need your help. Luckily, you can do so from the warm comfort of your own home.
In a new project, Penguin Watch, you’re being asked to look at and annotate images taken of the area. You’ll be asked to identify eggs, baby penguins, and adult penguins. You will also mark other animals nearby, so that researchers get a good idea of how often they interact.
The photographs come from a network of 50 satellite-linked cameras along the Antarctic Peninsula, near colonies of Gentoo, Chinstrap, Adélie, and King penguins. In addition to providing annotations for researchers to work on in the short term, your efforts here will help train image-processing algorithms, so that computers will be able to do this job in the future.
This is a Zooniverse project, so if you have already participated in things like Ancient Lives, Whale FM, or Old Weather, you already have a login. If not, register here to go get some happy feet, and not cold feet!