Become an AIS Tracker
In addition to the need for AIS detection in high-risk areas, there is also a need for a monitoring system to collect and share AIS treatment response data that could inform both research and management.
In partnership with University of Minnesota Extension, the AIS Trackers program will train citizen scientists and professionals to monitor changes in populations of AIS over time in specific locations (i.e., a lake or river reach) and to generate data useful for adaptive management, which includes assessing treatment options and evaluating response to treatment efforts.
The program is open to professionals such as AIS managers as well as citizen scientists, such as lake association leaders, county AIS task forces members, Master Naturalists, and other motivated citizens. There is a minimum level of service required to maintain certification. Sign up here to receive updates about the program.
Once trained, AIS Trackers will input data into an interactive AIS database, which will be accessible not only to MAISRC researchers, but also to AIS managers at the Minnesota DNR, enabling them to extend their reach for surveillance, monitoring, response, and management.
Participants successfully completing the AIS Trackers program will be able to:
- Execute an AIS survey protocol, collecting population data that can be reliably used for management decision-making;
- Identify important sources of uncertainty affecting the reliability of population estimates for particular AIS;
- Enter data, perform queries, and conduct quality control checks on population data;
- Estimate changes to a population based on monitoring data and help MAISRC scientists determine which vital attributes (e.g., recruitment, juvenile or adult survival) contribute most to these changes;
- Help MAISRC scientists determine if population trends over space or time can be confidently established, given sampling effort and reliability.
Online, classroom, and field session curricula will be developed to support these learning objectives. More details will be available as the program develops.