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Biodiversity and tech: become a Marine Ranger!

Nikolina Kukoč

Nikolina Kukoč

23.05.2022.

Yesterday was the International Day for Biological Diversity, more commonly known as Biodiversity Day. It got us thinking of the ways technology can aid the preservation of biodiversity, and we decided to invite you to – become a Marine Ranger!

You might be wondering what exactly we are thinking about or contemplating the fact that you’re not a good fit for a Marine Ranger, but we beg to differ.

Technology made sure to make it easy for you to become one!

So – let’s swim through our lovely Adriatic Sea all the way to Lošinj. Why there? You’ll see. 😉

Why are we swimming to Lošinj?

Because that is where Blue World is, of course! The Blue World Institute of Marine Research and Conservation (BWI) works to protect the marine environment in the Adriatic Sea by operating three different programs – research, education, and conservation.

The Blue World Institute research is focused mainly on large marine vertebrates – such as dolphins, whales, sea turtles, sharks, and giant devil rays – informing their various educational activities and conservation projects. Their work is tied mostly to the area around the Adriatic islands of Lošinj, Murter, and Vis.

They collaborate with the local communities, nationally, regionally, as well as internationally to advance sustainable marine management and environmental sustainability in the Mediterranean Basin.

Or, to put it bluntly – they are amazing! 🙂

This year, the Blue World Institute is organizing its first Adriatic Biodiversity Conservation Week from May 21st to 28th: “Our goal is to involve and inform the public through numerous activities about the need to preserve the sea, as well as dolphins, whales, and sea turtles as they are key parts of our ecosystem.

We will introduce the public to what we do by presenting our projects, giving a series of lectures on our work, and organizing various activities such as field classes for students and the release of the recovered sea turtle Malin back into the sea.

During our Biodiversity Conservation Week, we are also launching the first Croatian BioBlitz.

BioBlitz is a civic science activity that invites volunteers and nature lovers to contribute to the collection of information on observations of individual species or groups of animals in nature, and in our case, this includes marine mammals in the Adriatic. The goal is to help scientists identify areas of occurrence and habitats, or the emergence of new species.”

Aside from taking part in the first-ever Croatian BioBlitz, you can support the work of the Blue World Institute throughout the year by volunteering or joining them for internships, going dolphin watching with them, and even adopting a dolphin of your own.

But that’s after you become a Marine Ranger!

Become a Marine Ranger!

Marine Ranger is a citizen science application enabling the collection of information on opportunistic observations of living, injured, or by-caught cetaceans (whales and dolphins) and other marine mammals. The app was developed by the Blue World Institute within the LIFE Delphi project that is co-financed by the LIFE program of the European Union and the Office for Non-Governmental Organizations of the Government of the Republic of Croatia.

Marine mammals are globally endangered, and everyone can help to protect them – including you!

By getting involved, sharing your observations, and following what others are reporting you can become immersed in daily issues of marine mammal conservation and help the researchers of the Blue World Institute and their international colleagues preserve the wonders of our seas.

Your reports and observations will help the researchers identify threats and areas of interactions with dolphins, whales, and seals, as well as allow them to act swiftly in case of an emergency.

Your participation can help scientists and managers develop better measures for the conservation of marine mammals.

By becoming a Marine Ranger, you will support the work of the Blue World Institute and ensure a better future for all marine mammals!

Learn about marine mammals and contribute to scientific research

When you are on the sea or nearby and if you see a marine mammal, use the Marine Ranger app to report the sighting. Share your findings with others, and learn more about the marine environment and the interactions of marine mammals with fishermen and boaters.

There are only so many marine biologists and researchers in the Mediterranean, with only so many boats.

Therefore, your contribution to their work matters!

With your help and the help of any friends you invite to download the Marine Ranger app, you can make a significant contribution to the scientists who work hard every day to better understand the Mediterranean Sea, as well as the whales, dolphins, and other animals who inhabit it.

Amazingly enough, the Mediterranean is home to 12 and an occasional destination for 17 more marine mammal species!

Become an expert at recognizing them at sea, learn how to identify their different behaviors, and how you should behave to make the most of the encounter without disturbing the animals.

Contribute to the scientific research and conservation efforts of the Mediterranean by downloading the Marine Ranger app on your Android or Apple smartphone and do something good for the environment while you’re out and about enjoying the beauty of the Adriatic Sea and Croatian coastline! 😀

Photos by: Blue World Institute

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About author:

Nikolina Kukoč

Researching is woven into my DNA, but I am a musician at heart. Interested in too many things and always curious. Forever in love with Split and enchanted by people who teach me new things. When I am not creating content about Split's tech community, you will find me in singing rehearsals, somewhere in nature, in the theater, or with my head stuck in a book. I do my best to live by the verse from the opera "Fedora" by Umberto Giordano: "Love forbids you not to love."

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