With BBC Two’s Springwatch returning to screens at the end of May, viewers will be invited to join in the series biggest ever citizen science project – Gardenwatch. Designed in conjunction with the British Trust for Ornithology (BTO), the Gardenwatch survey will sit on The Open University’s nQuire site. Academic Lead on the project, Professor Mike Sharples tells us more about Gardenwatch, nQuire and other exciting missions you can get involved in.
What is nQuire?
Developed by the OU, nQuire is a platform to help people throughout the UK discover more about the world around them. Available to all, participants can take part in two types of nQuire mission – confidential missions and social missions.
Confidential missions are surveys to find out more about yourself. The overall results will be published on the Quire platform, but we will never show or share your personal data.
Social missions are open explorations of your world. You can see and discuss each contribution, and the data is available for anyone to view and download.
Each mission has a ‘big question’ that can only be answered with your help. You will be given instructions about what to do and feedback on your contribution once you complete the mission.
Get involved with Gardenwatch
Gardenwatch focuses on the last great and perhaps least known wildness regions in the country – our gardens. UK gardens cover an area of land three times the size of all the country’s RSPB nature reserves put together. Now more than ever before Britain’s gardens are a critical refuge for wildlife. It is vital that they are surveyed to find out what species live there and what needs to be done to protect and encourage them in the future.
Gardenwatch will ask the public to undertake an easy, nature-related mission every week in order to collect data that will help to map the health of the UK’s wildlife up and down the country. By Autumnwatch, the preliminary data will be analysed by BTO scientists and the results will be shared with viewers during the live programmes.
There are a number of missions already available on nQuire, including The Feel Good Test in partnership with UCL and the BBC, which looks at how creativity could improve wellbeing; Forest 404 which is connected to BBC Sounds programme of the same name and aims to help us better understand how people respond to the sounds of the natural world; and finally What’s your Chronotype?, which is all about what times of the day you’re at your best.
Find out more
About nQuire, Gardenwatch and other missions available