November 24, 2021
Welcome to the Project Pollinator location at Brandeis University. The original Brandeis Project Pollinator garden was planted in the summer of 2016, with the goal of restoring pollinator and herbivore populations in order to promote local biodiversity and beautify a location in the heart of campus. This hillside was formally an unused mowed area and was converted into a native pollinator plot to become a hub for insect study on campus. It contains many New England plant species such as the Common Milkweed, New England Aster, and Purple Coneflower It is a favorite observation location of students on campus when making iNaturalist observations.
In 2021, the original Project Pollinator was expanded by the Waltham high school interns and the Lemberg Environmental Action force and will continue to be a wonderful urban habitat for native pollinators. To complement our biodiversity observations on iNaturalist this Chronolog station helps us document how the plants fill in the area and how the landscape changes over time. In addition, an important use from this project is how we can observe the plants’ phenology, or seasonal changes, and have a record of the dates during which changes take place. This could help us understand how climate change could be affecting plants, as seasonal growth is often spurred by shifts in temperature.
A bonus to this Chronolog is it also has a sightline extending all the way to the Boston, and can provide us with an additional method to observe air pollution and visibility. By contributing to this Chronolog, you can help gather information about how the plot is growing and thriving throughout the seasons. Thanks for spending time to document the view today at Project Pollinator. If you want to contribute more consider joining the Brandeis community on iNaturalist. Brandeis University Biodiversity Project on iNaturalist
At Brandeis, we employ models of both community (place-based) science and citizen science to connect students and the local community to efforts that both empower and democratize the scientific process.
Though research and observation by members of the public, especially of the natural world, has been occurring for centuries, the terms community science and citizen science did not enter the public lexicon until relatively recently. With the advent of new social networks and crowdsourcing technologies, and fueled by a new crop of scientists receptive to grassroot methods, we’ve seen this field grow rapidly.
Community and citizen science research occurs on campus, about campus and in partnership with local, regional, national and international partners. Research ranges from place-based projects focused on forestry and land use in collaboration with local stakeholders, to independent participation in large-scale open projects and taking the lead in international collaboration through our program’s involvement in the City Nature Challenge.