A new Mammals on Roads app for iOS9 and above, and Android 7, has been created to enable sightings of Britain’s mammals to be recorded on the move, allowing wildlife charity People’s Trust for Endangered Species (PTES) to identify changes in population numbers and help conservation.
The app is free, easy to use, and boasts charming graphics of a whole host of mammals, from hedgehogs and hares, to badgers and bats. There are also informative audio descriptions, providing useful background information and insights into the lives of these creatures.
David Wembridge, Surveys Officer at PTES explains: “Data gathered from Mammals on Roads is vital to conservation work. The survey has been running for over 15 years, which allows us to compare data year on year, and identify where we need to focus our conservation efforts.”
The new app is part of PTES’ Mammals on Roads survey, which takes place annually between July and September. To take part, members of the public are asked to record sightings of Britain’s mammals – dead or alive – during car journeys of 20 miles or more on a single day, outside of built up areas – perfect for summer road trips or family holidays!
David continues: “While recording roadkill can be a little gruesome, higher levels of roadkill can actually indicate a healthy population of mammals nearby. We hope this new app will engage new audiences, who already have mobile technology at their fingertips, with wildlife conservation, in addition to our many fantastic volunteers to who take part each year by logging sightings online or via a survey pack.”
Since 2001, over half a million kilometres of Britain’s roads have been surveyed through Mammals on Roads, with previous data alerting conservationists at PTES to the dramatic fall in native hedgehog numbers. These findings resulted in the launch of the nationwide campaign Hedgehog Street in 2011 with partner charity the British Hedgehog Preservation Society, which to date has 44,000 ‘Hedgehog Champions’ pledging to help protect this species from further decline. Further research is also being undertaken to investigate the reasons behind the decline, showing the true power of citizen science and what the British public can help conservationists achieve.
Jamie Lemon from tech company, dijipiji, who developed the app for iOS9 users says: “Putting together apps and wildlife might seem counterintuitive at first, but what they give you – real-time mapping and big data analysis – are powerful conservation tools. This new technology enables us to help monitor and protect our natural environment: with the right app, we can all play a critical role in conservation.”
To take part, you can download the free Mammals on Roads app from the App Store or Google Play. Alternatively, the survey can be completed via the PTES website (www.ptes.com/mor) or via a printed survey pack. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0207 498 4533 to request a pack to be sent to you.
Mammals on Roads runs from Tuesday 4th July until 30th September 2017.
If you want to support PTES’ ongoing conservation work, you can donate £3 by texting ‘PTES17 £3’ to 70070.
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For further information, interview requests, or images please call Adela Cragg or Jane Bevan at Firebird PR on 01235 835297/ 07977 459 547 or email email@example.com
Notes to Editors
Available for interview:
- David Wembridge, Surveys Officer, PTES
- Jill Nelson, CEO, PTES
- PTES, a UK conservation charity created in 1977, is ensuring a future for endangered species throughout the world. We protect some of our most threatened wildlife species and habitats, and provide practical conservation support through research, grant-aid, educational programmes, wildlife surveys, publications and public events. Our current priority species and habitats include hazel dormice, hedgehogs, water voles, noble chafers, stag beetles, traditional orchards, native woodlands and wood pasture and parkland.
- If you want to support PTES’ ongoing conservation work, you can donate £3 by texting ‘PTES17 £3’ to 70070.
- Visit ptes.org for more information, or follow PTES on Facebook (www.facebook.com/ptes) and Twitter (@PTES).
Mammals on Roads app
- The app was originally developed by Dr Brock Craft of the London Knowledge Lab and Dr Adam Talcott of Atomic Powered and has been completely updated by Jamie Lemon (dijipiji.com).
About Jamie Lemon, app developer for iOS9
- Jamie Lemon was brought up on the north coast of Ireland with the Atlantic Ocean as a powerful daily presence. His love of the natural environment is rooted in long walks along this coastline as a teenager. Since 2004, before the days of the iPhone, he has been working in mobile application design & development. He enjoys making useful apps which aim to educate and enrich people’s lives.
- He is particularly interested in making apps which encourage people to explore wildlife, conservation and to consider the environment.
- Some of the previous apps he has made include both the Nature Finder app and 30 Days Wild for The Wildlife Trusts, UK.