How to be a Citizen Scientist

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Spend time outdoors for science!

Every one has a little bit of scientist in them—it is the reason we are curious. Below are some ways that you can release that inner scientist!

There are many different ways that you can participate as a citizen scientist. The way you choose to participate simply depends on how involved you want to be.

Contribute to this research project by doing any of the following:

You can scout for and report dying plants!

Your adventures take you places we would never go! Let us know what is going on in those far-out locations by sharing your observations with us! Report dying plants here!

You also may save a lot of other plants by reporting an epidemic early! Early detection is critical for preventing the spread of invasive species. Your report may be the first of its kind! Reporting new disease sightings quickly will allow the land managers to try to eradicate the invasive disease causing organisms before they spread too far!

Next time you are hiking or mountain biking through the gorgeous fynbos biome, keep an eye out for dying plants—and if you see any, take a photo and mark the GPS point for us.

If you are a landowner and you are willing to permit us to organize a research activity on your property, please contact us here.


You can submit samples!

Recreating on private property? If you have permission from the landowner, you can contribute samples that lead to the discovery of new Phytophthora species in an area outside of our reach. Just remember not to disturb red-listed species.





Phase two of Cape Citizen Science invites you to go hiking for science. We randomly generated several points across the three vegetation subclasses of the fynbos biome that you can hike to. We are interested in testing whether the Phytophthora communities in the soil differ between the subclasses.

You can also send us samples from your backyard, nursery, or any other areas you have permission. We have received samples from plant-producers, home growers, botanical garden staff and park/reserve rangers. We accept samples of soil, water, and plant tissues. Instructions for sampling soil under a dying plant can be found here.

The Cape Town Hypothesis Test