Thursday, July 20, 2017

#MatchMaking: Male at Aged Volet

This week we like to get your opinion about a handsome male. And it's easy as a-b-c - literally!

He is a fully grown-up adult with mostly black hair. His eyebrows are rather straigt, the mask around the eyes is black and the muzzle slightly brighter. The ears stick out a little. There might be some baldness on his forehead but we don't know exactly the shape and size of it due to the lighting conditions.

Have a closer look at him in the videos on Chimp & See: clip 1   clip2

In our discussion on talk we already ruled out the proposed match to Caruso. Now we have two possibilities left. The first one is Magnus and the second one is Baron. On purpose we don't give either of their descriptions here to not bias you. We'd like you to come up with your own opinion. The next two collages show the two males:

Here's our question: Do you think the male above is 

a) Magnus
b) Baron, or
c) none of the two

Have you decided yet? Then please head over to the ongoing discussion on talk and tell us what you think. You can also just leave the respective letter a, b or c, if you prefer. We very much appreciate your participation!

Thank you and see you at Chimp & See where the brandnew site "Green Snowflake" is up and running!

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Birds of a feather

If you’ve been browsing the discussion boards on Chimp&See Talk, you may have noticed there is a new species guide: Identifying Birds.  The guide is meant to serve as a starting point for those wanting to improve their ID skills for the birds we see at C&S.  I know I certainly got more acquainted with the birds we have seen while writing the guide and I feel more confident identifying species now. I hope the guide helps others to do the same!

Screenshot of a portion of the bird guide

The guide can be found in The Objects section of the Help board or simply click on the link above.
The guide groups species by broad, shared characteristics that should be discernible even to those inexperienced with bird ID (poultry-like birds, predatory birds, etc.).  There is also a list of species we most often encounter at the top of the guide, so check those descriptions first if you are uncertain where to begin.  Each species has a short physical description as well as images and links to videos from C&S to aid in identification.

Thank you to all the moderators who provided help and feedback for the guide and to everyone for their continuing efforts with the C&S project!

Fly high and happy tagging!

Friday, July 14, 2017

#MatchMaking: Dry Lake juveniles

This new post in our chimp matching series introduces a current proposal at Chimp & See, and asks you to help us decide if they match or not.  This week, we're looking at some of the juveniles from the Dry Lake 11 site.

First, we have a young chimp known as DL11Juv15 (for the Dry Lake 11 site, the 15th juvenile found):

We believe this is a male chimp, and our volunteers have described him as a large juvenile with a long, overall dark face.  We also see round ears that stick out on the side, and thin brows with a tiny bald spot at the hairline between them.  We also see a bald patch in the hair on his left arm near the elbow, and on the left shoulder.

Here are the full video clips of this chimp: Clip 1, Clip 2, Clip 3

Now, here is another young chimp from Dry Lake (the one on the left):

He or she is similar in size to our DL11Juv15.  Our volunteers describe him or her as having even face coloration, ears that stick out, a tiny bald spot in the middle of the brows, and a bald spot on the right shoulder.

Here are the full video clips of this chimp (it's the one that looks at the camera and then walks toward it): Clip 1, Clip 2

Finally, we have this juvenile from Dry Lake (the one on the left):

We don't see much, but our volunteers see a similar body size as the other two juveniles.  S/he also appears to have bald spots on both shoulders, as well as a hairless right wrist.  The only missing feature seems to be the bald spot above the brow.

Here is the full video clip of this chimp (again, the one who begins on the left and leaves around :04 seconds): Clip

What do you think?

Are these chimps matches to each other?  Please share your thoughts in the comments below, or join our ongoing discussion over at Chimp & See.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

#MatchMaking: An adult female with an infant

This new posting in our chimpmatching series introduces a currently discussed match proposal at Chimp&See and invites you to review and get involved.

First up are two slightly overexposed videos of an adult female with an infant. We think, she might be Sita and her offspring Nini from the Cool Silence site. The colored footage is from the "known" chimp Sita.

Like Sita, this female is very bald, has a barrel-like upper body and skinny legs. The eye brows are arched, but not prominently protruded. The nostrils have a hawkish appearance that is reversed by a very rounded muzzle. Her rectangular face is irregularly colored with pinkish pigments around the eyes and at the upper part of the muzzle. These coloration differences can also be seen in the black-and-white footage.

proposed match sequence 1 here and here

proposed match sequence 2 here and here

all known videos from Sita can be found here

Most notable are the irregular formed ears. They both stick out quite a bit. The left one is probably just a bit strangely grown; the right ear is seriously deformed (maybe even cut).

The roundish swelling is not much protruded.

What do you think? Could this be the same female?

Please keep in mind that these are camera trap videos from an unknown (unhabituated) chimpanzee population, so we don’t have the ultimate answer whether this is a match or not either! 

If this posting got you interested in our matching discussions, please come over to the discussion forum and get involved.  

We are very much interested in your opinion!

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Thank You!!!

From the absolute bottom of our hearts the PanAf science team wants to thank you guys for making this 2nd Anniversary at Chimp&See so special!

We started this project hoping that the videos we've been recording since 2010 would capture some minds and hearts but we never knew how amazing of a community we would be fortunate enough to build as well.

We are of course excited for the science, for all the analyses we're gonna be able to do thanks to YOU guys! But we are equally excited about getting people involved and excited about conservation and animal behaviour. We hope this window into chimpanzee habitats, that will be taking us to 14 different African nations by the time we are done, shines a strong and bright light on how important it is to protect these areas :)

A massive thank you to everyone who has been involved in classifications for the past 2 years and if you haven't been to Talk yet, please come and visit!!! Lurk for a while and then join in the conversation :) You can get involved in chimp matching, tagging camera reactions, discussing your favourite videos or anything to do with science, behaviour, conservation, or anything at all really! The Chimp&See Talk community is really my favourite place to go everyday - catch up on the "meet our citizen scientists" series if you missed it last week :)

We want to specifically thank our moderators again for all they do and for staying so motivated and engaged and dealing with the science team's noobiness when it comes to all of this. Especially to Anja and Kris who organized all of this year's Anniversary activities! Pant hoots and warmest thanks to: Kris, Anja, Jane, Zuzi & Briana!

We also want to give a massive thank you to the citizen scientists who contributed to this year's "Meet our volunteers" stories. It really touched us deeply that you shared your stories with us and that you feel as passionate about conservation as we do! Let us know if you ever want to volunteer in the field ;)  Pant hoots and warmest thanks to: Boleyn, Snorticus, Batfan,Vestigial, LauraKLynn, Paleosue, Squish5 and Zoogirl1 

To celebrate, I sign off with my favourite video that still makes me smile, an early one but a good one - #duikerfail

Mimi & the Science Team

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

A Story from @zoogirl1!

To help celebrate Chimp and See's 2nd anniversary, we asked our volunteers to share their personal stories, memories, and anniversary wishes for the blog. Today's volunteer story is from @zoogirl1:

On Chimp and See, you know me as zoogirl1.  My real name is Caryn Bunshaft.

I'd like to say... Hi, my name is Caryn.

I picked zoogirl1 for a screen name because I would prefer to be with an animal over a human most of the time.

I would travel to every place on earth to see the animals living in the wild and I am doing a good job at that. When I don't travel, I volunteer at the Bronx Zoo with the aquatic birds (yes, I play with penguins on a regular basis) because they won't take a volunteer in the mammal department. I volunteer at a wildlife rehab center which is mostly for birds of prey. (I know, more birds). But I get to handle falcons, hawks and owls. Not bad.

They have many of the animals we see here in the Congo area of the zoo. I have gone specifically to see the duikers since we have seen so many of them. The duikers are soooooo small, they can't always find them in the exhibit.

Somehow through my husbands connections, I was introduced to this wonderful program. I have been glued to this thing for two years now. It is one of the few ways I can see wild things in their habitat and help them at the same time. I learn so much from the discussions.

The first time I was offered to name a chimp I was thrilled. Since then, I have named a few more chimps, a badger and a leopard. How cool is that?

Every now an then, the other projects on zooniverse call my name for a quick blast to help finish something and I willingly participate but always come right back here.

Thanks, Caryn, and all our volunteers for making C&S such a special project!  This wraps up the Volunteer Story series in honor of our 2nd anniversary.  Stay tuned tomorrow for a message from Mimi!