UBC Undergraduate Research

Developing an Educational Booklet for the Delta Nature Reserve to Encourage Public Engagement and Interest in the Plant Biodiversity at Burns Bog Keller, Jasmine; Kim, Jihyun; Han, Zhixiu; Zhang, Tongkun

Abstract

The purpose of this project is to design a comprehensive and informative booklet that can encourage the public to explore the bog ecosystem and to understand the importance of the plant communities at the Delta Nature Reserve. As Burns Bog plays an important role in both local and global ecosystems, it is essential for us to improve current bog management and increase citizens’ awareness to protect the bog. However, few citizens in Delta know the state and the importance of Delta Nature Reserve because it is only easily accessible in the summer. As well, the resources available to the public were little and lacking in engaging qualities. To encourage community engagement, we designed a comprehensive information booklet about the Delta Nature Reserve as an effective resource. This booklet includes the following: information about the common and invasive plant species present, maps of Burns Bog and the Delta Nature Reserve, a plant-distribution and ecosystem zone map, a monthly weather graphic, a seasonal variation indicator, and some additional information regarding how to get involved in citizen science. In addition to the information booklet, we have created two resources for furthering community engagement in citizen science which includes a dichotomous key for identification of non-woody vascular plants as well as a data sheet for collecting citizen science. Citizens would be able to use the booklet to learn about the Delta Nature Reserve and locate some of the plant species within then use the citizen science resources to identify plant species and record observations. A potential implication of the information booklet is that it can provide visually-attractive information to help visitors investigate the bog environment and learn about its unique characteristics. Its simplicity makes information such as plant taxonomy and distribution more accessible to the public. The booklet also allows people to record and share the information about plant communities with the Burns Bog Conservation Society, which can benefit bog monitoring and management. The contents in the booklet are readily designed to transfer into a citizen science app for smartphones by the Burns Bog Conservation Society. In the meantime, the information booklet and the citizen science resources can be distributed to visitors of the Delta Nature Reserve, the community, biodiversity enthusiasts, students, and potential stakeholders alike.

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Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International

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