Clemson Vanishing Firefly Project: Using a Mobile Phone App as Education and Research Tools for Sustainability
The novelty of this citizen scientist project is to integrate mobile phone technology into a field research study. Students of the Clemson Vanishing Firefly Project will improve mobile phone app (‘Firefly Flash Counter’), manage the surveys to record the number of fireflies (using the number of bioluminescence flashings as a proxy for abundance, and develop education and marketing materials for the mobile device app. Fireflies are reliable indicators of environmental health because their abundance is correlated to the availability of suitable and undegraded habitats. The data, with the exact locations and times of the observations, will be sent to a server housed at Clemson University and will be used for long-term climate change and sustainability studies. Map showing the occurrences of firefly, land use patterns, and environmental quality impairments can be viewed though Clemson Community Inventory Resource online.