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February 22, 2016
For immediate release
New Nature Tracker App Developed
Communities, Land and Environment
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“Our department staff partnered with local watershed members to develop a new app that will allow Islanders and government staff to track where certain wildlife and plants are located on P.E.I.,” said Minister Mitchell. “This new app will help our wildlife staff assess specific species that are rarely seen or difficult to track. It may also be used by Islanders who are interested in knowing what wildlife has been seen, when it was spotted and where it was located.”
Development of the app was led by the Kensington North Watershed Association, with assistance from Forests, Fish and Wildlife staff and supported by the Wildlife Conservation Fund. This app will be used for recreational purposes, research purposes and also by Island organizations including the P.E.I. Invasive Species Council to assist in the tracking of invasive species that are threatening nature on P.E.I. Watershed groups across the province will be among the main users of the app, both benefitting from this wildlife tracker and being valuable contributors to the recordings of species, given their work in rich Island habitats.
“The smooth green snake is an example of a species where there have been no recorded observations on P.E.I. in recent years but we think they are still here. The app can help us confirm that,” said Wildlife Biologist Garry Gregory. “We are hoping Islanders will use this as not only a fun recreational tool to enjoy with their families but also as a way to help us learn more about the status of our Island wildlife and plants.”
Ultimately, users of the app will be able to click on communities on an Island map to bring up what species were seen in that region, when they were seen and a description of the sighting. Users will also be able to contribute to the database by taking a photo of the species seen and uploading it to the map with a description of the sighting.
The app is presently Android compatible and an iPhone version is in development. It will be tested over the summer, with a public launch expected next year.
To learn more about the new app and to view a video of it being used, please visit: http://ow.ly/YCiXg