Our XperiBIRD Project Won A FNRS Prize



Pupils place the camera in the nest box of XperiBIRD.be (photo: Thierry Hubin, RBINS).
Our XperiBIRD Project Won A FNRS Prize
post by
Reinout Verbeke

Our citizen-science project XperiBIRD.be has won a prize of the funding agency FNRS. With XperiBIRD, children can observe life in a tits’ nest by means of a camera and a nanocomputer placed in the nest box.

Since 2017, around 600 nest boxes have been delivered in the country and pupils share their observations on the website. With the data collected, ornithologists can study, for example, changes in the behaviour of tits.

On the 21st of January, we received a 25,000-euro prize from the FNRS which grants significative funds for the scientific research in Belgium. The amount of the prize comes from the ISDT WERNAERS Fund that supports media (newspapers, websites, movies, etc.) communicating about scientific culture.

XperiBIRD was launched in 2016 in collaboration with Google.org. The project is an extension of our science truck XperiLAB going from school to school to fascinate children for sciences by doing experiments.

An observation network

During three “seasons” of XperiBIRD, around 600 free nest boxes equipped with cameras were given to 563 schools and 38 non-profit organisations. 554 nest boxes were occupied by birds, resulting in 302 brood cases, 2,640 eggs, and 1,740 fledglings.

This project gathers natural sciences (observation of tits) and technology (programming of nanocomputers and data coding). XperiBIRD wants to bring sciences in the life of children aged 10 to 14 to participate in. The aim of the project is to make teenagers aware of sciences and technology.

Our colleague and biologist Wendy Massart was supervising the project during the last three years. Our Institute had already received support from the ISDT WERNAERS Funds to carry on the project for the academic term 2019-2020.

Categories: Schools
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