The American Pika Atlas
Did you snap a photo of a pika on your last alpine hiking trip? If so it could help scientists track where pikas persist and where they may be disappearing.
The American Pika Atlas is a continent wide effort to collect observations of pikas in every US county and Canadian district where they are thought to occur. The project is supported by the North American Pika Consortium, the California Department of Fish and Game, and the Front Range Pika Project and curated by a team of pika researchers.
Your photo might confirm that a threatened population of pikas still persists, or you might make a new discovery outside the known pika range. You might not know until you get involved, contribute your photos today!
Become a citizen scientist...
PikaNET and The Front Range Pika Project
PikaNET is a citizen science initiative to engage people in monitoring the American pika. Pika Patrol volunteers monitor sites each year to track populations long-term. Annual trainings teach volunteers what species and indicators they are looking for, where to find them, how to collect data, and finally how to submit the data to a statewide online database. These workshops are a combination of indoor and outdoor trainings.
This program is a collaborative effort among several organizations including the Mountain Studies Insititute, The Denver Zoo, Rocky Mountain Wild, Natural Resource Ecology Laboratory at Colorado State University, the Colorado Division of Wildlife, and the San Juan Public Lands Center. The monitoring effort is linked to the research being done by Dr. Chris Ray and Ph.D. Candidate Liesl Peterson Erb from the University of Colorado – Boulder. Chris and Liesl have assisted in the development of compatible protocols and procedures.
There are currently two coordinated efforts to contribute to PikaNET in Colorado:
Volunteers along the Front Range can get involved through the Front Range Pika Project, run by the Denver Zoo and Rocky Mountain Wild. Please see the FRPP website for more information.
Volunteers in Southwest Colorado can get involved through the Mountain Studies Institute. Please see their website for more information.