Source the peo­ple

Down to Earth - - LIFE & NA­TURE -

Crowd sourc­ing helped de­velop risk maps for the gi­ant African snail CROWD-SOURC­ING can help map the dis­tri­bu­tion of sev­eral alien species. Take for in­stance the highly in­va­sive gi­ant African snail ( Achati­na­fulica), which was in­tro­duced in In­dia in 1847. Re­searchers geo-tagged in­for­ma­tion on its dis­tri­bu­tion across In­dia us­ing data from var­i­ous In­ter­net and so­cial me­dia sources along with pub­lished records. They used the tech­nique of eco­log­i­cal nich mod­el­ling to de­velop risk maps of the gi­ant African snail un­der var­i­ous cli­matic sce­nar­ios. Their map­ping can help ex­perts take ap­pro­pri­ate ac­tion to con­trol the species.

Nearly 50 per cent of data on tem­po­ral and spa­tial dis­tri­bu­tion of the gi­ant African snail, which have been used to de­velop these maps, has come from crowd­sourced in­for­ma­tion. This high­lights the tremen­dous con­tri­bu­tion that cit­i­zen sci­en­tists can make to­wards map­ping and manag­ing in­va­sive alien species.

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