Secchi Citizen Science Project
At the start of 2024 the Secchi Disk study ( will celebrate entering its 12th year of engaging seafarers in citizen science by collecting phytoplankton data from the world’s oceans. The founder, plankton scientist Dr Richard Kirby, has a number of goals for the long-term study, principally to captivate sailors in an overlooked world of life, for it to be enduring and for it to collect good phytoplankton data over a wide area to help address fundamental, scientific questions at a time of global and marine environmental change.
Thanks to the participation of sailors, those goals are being met, although of course the study could always be bigger and continues to need active participation from global sailors.
The Secchi Disk study, launched in February 2013, is the world’s largest citizen science marine phytoplankton study and the data you collect can make a valuable contribution to science, as the latest publication from the Study in Nature Scientific Reports has shown.
Dr Kirby told Noonsite, “The Secchi Disk study is so easy to take part in, so why not get involved on your next passage? All you need is to make a simple Secchi Disk and download the free Secchi mobile application app, and then you are all set to collect valuable in-situ data. It’s a study for all the family and it is especially, a great tool to get children interested in the unseen and often overlooked life that surrounds your yacht as you sail.”
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