Project BioD

Seek and Destroy — ProjectBioD Begins Weed Game to Help Protect Biodiversity

The Glossy Black Cockatoo

The Glossy Black Cockatoo: Dedicated volunteers are engaged in a critical mission to protect endangered species.

It’s been over two years since ProjectBioD began exploring ways to combine online gaming activity with the protection of biodiversity in both Australia and South Asia. Based in Canberra, our activities have introduced us to numerous Australian organisations, from our immediate neighbors the Atlas of Living Australia, the Australian National Botanical Gardents, to the Perth-based Gaia Resources, the Sydney-based Eco Logical Australia and the Departmentof Natural Resources — and many others.

Each one recognizes the value of IT in their mission. This, what might be called, “Australian Bio-IT Community” is very switched on, innovative, fast-growing and extremely supportive of one another. Our efforts, after all, pursue a shared goal — creating sustainable IT models to help foster the protection of our precious Australian environment. And we’ve made great progress figuring out how all the various pieces fit together.

One of the most interesting developments in the last few months, however, has been with groups that have nothing to do with IT. In the Palerang region and Great Eastern Ranges of New South Wales we’ve met volunteers who are working hard to protect endangered species (see, for example, the Glossy Black-Cockatoo Project).

During these meetings we’ve discovered that many of the volunteers are engaged in a type of real world game activity every day. Their mission? To seek out and destroy invasive weeds. Some exciting meetings with groups such as Kosciuszko2Coast and the Queanbeyan Landcare Group have made it clear to us exactly how we can engage people in the challenge of identifying weeds in their localities — and ProjectBioD will be working with them on exactly that, developing games that educate and engage communities in controling weeds.

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Online Biodiversity Games and Education