Looking like a miniature bok choy (chinese cabbage) these pea-sized galls with a bulbous base and cluster of leaves at the free end, were seen at the axils on this young eucalyptus tree. A cut section of the thick part of the gall revealed a white "crunchy" core with a uni-locular chamber in the centre. Seconds after cutting it open I saw a miniscule insect run out ( pic 4) onto the stem . I could discern a pair of eyes and a brown dorso-ventrally flattened body (apologise for poor photo quality). The insect moved very fast on its legs.
For the developers at New York start-up Networked Organisms, smartphones are the butterfly nets of the 21st Century. Their tool, Project Noah, lets people upload photos of plants and wildlife around them, creating a map of the natural world and contributing to scientific research in the process.
Bespectacled scientists of yore would carry around hefty field guides, made up of hundreds of pages of text and photos. But these days, smartphone owners have a lighter option: an app called Project Noah, which aims to help people identify plants and animals as well as collect data from "citizen scientists" about where certain species are located.
Project Noah enables us to be part of a more focused online community where we can learn more about wildlife around us and contribute to scientific research. It pulls participants into deeper, more meaningful engagement by enabling people to go on “missions” to collectively map changes based on sightings.
A modern invention that may also hold the key to saving species in the future. Project Noah is a global study that encourages nature lovers to document the wildlife they encounter, using a purpose built phone app and web community. In addition to the virtual "collection" of species, Project Noah encourages citizen science by linking up with existing surveys including the International Spider Survey and the Global Coral Reef Monitoring Network.