The forests in Norway are creeping farther up in altitude and in latitude (Bryn and Potthoff 20181), but the process and mechanisms associated with these changes are still not fully understood. Where agricultural abandonment occurs (grazing in particular), the forest grows back but temperatures ultimately determine how high in the mountains and how far north there may be trees.
To monitor the progression of the forest and better understand this phenomenon, the Natural History Museum in Oslo has developed the Natur i Endring (Nature in change) citizen science project, in collaboration with the Norwegian Tourist Association (DNT) and the Norwegian Mountain Center. The data collected by citizen scientists are analyzed by researchers from the Geo-Ecology Research Group (GeCO) at the Natural History Museum in Oslo and the results are shared online on the Naturidendring website2.
The Natur i Endring project focuses on the following principles:
- Contribute to innovative research
- Ensure multi-way communication between researchers and participants
- Make sure the participants can follow the project beyond data collection
- Create a sampling protocol that guarantees high data quality, so that the results can be published in scientific literature
- Make the data accessible to all
Wandering Owl & Wild Lab Projects, & our guests, participate in the data collection, using the Natur i Endring project to raise environmental awareness & provide data for the researchers in charge of the project at the Natural History Museum in Oslo.
Why is this project so important?
Approximately 150 words are need to explain this.
By participating in our project, your holiday in Northern Norway will contribute to important science on many different fronts & you will be leaving a positive impact behind on local ecosystems & the local community.
What will you experience?
- Explore the mountains around Tromsø, hike to remote areas where the last trees meet the tundra
- Spend time in & experience nature & explore Norwegian wilderness
- Have fun in a small group of eco-volunteers, meet & spend time with people who have similar interests
- Contribute to a research project aiming at better understanding the effect of climate change in the Arctic and its consequences on the ecosystem
- Participate in a meaningful action, get a sense of purpose and achievement
- Learn about the Arctic ecosystem and wildlife, and the local culture
What are the goals of the project?
- Increase awareness among the participants about the effect of climate change in the Arctic
- Offer travelers alternatives that benefit science and nature conservation
- Support the Natur i Endring research project and contribute to its database
- Collaborate with the researchers in charge of the project by sending and receiving feedback
- Offer an ethical form of tourism for travellers looking to give back to the local ecosystems & communities, rather then traditional extractive forms of tourism
What's the project plan?
This project takes place on a kayaking activity and goes for four hours. During your citizen science activity we'll kayak together along the northern Norwegian coastline to find the best place to take phytoplankton samples. After we have collected the samples, we'll paddle onto a small island to enjoy your home-made meal & to give you a small talk on phytoplankton & the role is plays in our local ecosystems & why the data you have collected is so important. Relax and keep a look out for reindeer on the white sand beaches, eagles circling above, ptarmigans, otters and other wildlife. Don't forget to look down into the water where you'll be able to see down to the sea floor. The water is crystal clear, offering an unforgettable kayaking experience. This citizen science kayaking activity is the best way to explore the coast of northern Norway & to contribute to the global monitoring of phytoplankton. After enjoying our famous home-made vegan & gluten free hot chocolate, we'll paddle back to Stonglandseidet, Senja.
Details about this project
Season: spring, summer, & autumn
Duration: 8 hours
Group size: 2 - 8 adults
Minimum age: 6 years old (please assess your child's interest for this activity, as all participants are required to contribute for the entirety of the project)
Meeting time: 08:50 in front of the Scandic Ishavhotel
Inclusions: All equipment needed, a light lunch, snacks, hot chocolate, coffee & tea, & photos of the project in web-sized resolution.
Safety considerations: The tour involves hiking; the conditions may be icy, slippery, uneven, muddy, a bit snowy, hot, humid, windy or otherwise. The temperatures may be cold & windy, so please ensure you are wearing appropriate clothing & have ample water for the activity. Wandering Owl has appropriate liability insurances, but please ensure you have your own medical & travel insurance, just as you would normally have.
Important information you need to know before booking: This activity is not a private activity. Because this project is focused on giving a net positive impact on the local community, our chosen kayaks, meal ingredients & equipment has been specifically selected because it meets our needs & doesn't unnecessarily increase our impact.
Here are some links to important information about the project to help you understand our project better.