Maine Forest Inventory Growth (FIG) is a field based, exploratory program developed by Maine Project Learning Tree that connects students to Maine forests.
FIG plots are areas of forest set up as long term sampling areas by forestry professionals, University of Maine professors and high school science teachers. Year after year the same measurements and observations made at FIG plots. Some teachers and students have been collecting data for over 10 years!
The longterm datasets created by monitoring FIG plots tell us about the health of forests and help researchers determine how forests are changing over time. Foresters have been using these datasets to manage forests for ecological health and economic productivity.
Maine Audubon supports Project FIG and other direct means of helping teachers and students utilize hands on citizen science to develop 21st century skills and contribute meaningful data to ongoing ecological field research. Maine Audubon also seeks to engage students and the public in rich opportunities to study and experience the countless benefits of Maine’s forests to both people and wildlife.
Learn more about Project FIG on the Maine FIG website.
iNaturalist is a web site and community for reporting observations of plant or animal species around the world. Special projects can be designed for any specific location such as a school or local natural area. Download the iNaturalist App for Apple or Android. Teacher Resources Related to iNaturalist:
Using their backyards as laboratories, participants in the Signs of the Seasons program help scientists document the local effects of global climate change. You can use an App, Nature’s Notebook, that makes recording data for Signs of the Seasons much easier. Download Nature’s Notebook for Apple or Android.
A very useful tool for educators is a set of habitat maps of your area. Free maps are available as either downloadable digital maps or large format paper maps. Not all Maine towns /regions have been mapped and maps older than two years are out-of-date and unavailable. Click here to see if your town is available or to request maps. Available Maps:
Maine Audubon has developed a lesson to acquaint your students with these maps and wildlife habitat requirements. To do this activity you should have a set of maps and a copy of Table 1 from the Maine Audubon publication, Conserving Wildlife in Maine’s Developing Landscape available for the students. Teacher Resource Related to Beginning with Habitat
Forestry for Maine Birds works to create more and better bird habitat through forest management that will benefit not only the songbirds of conservation concern, but many other wildlife species that use these habitats as well.
Beginning with Habitat: Conserving Maine’s Natural Landscape for Plants, Animals, and People Conserving Wildlife In Maine’s…