Alabama Museum of Natural History

Community Science Programs

man sifting stones and other sediment and Shark's Tooth Creek The museum has several community science programs that the general public can participate including OdonataCentral, and several iNaturalist projects.

Community science refers to research collaborations between scientists and volunteers that expand opportunities for scientific data collection while also providing access to this information to community members. Volunteers follow a protocol and explore the topic, while the data are used to answer research questions.

Community science programs, usually addressing questions that require long-term, large-scale data collection, are a great way for people to contribute to science. AZA-accredited zoos and aquariums have long participated in a range of community science programs, ranging in topics from bird and butterfly surveys, to beach monitoring, to using camera traps to identify which animals are living in local landscapes.