As a digital design agency with a passion for the environment, we actively seek out charities who need our help. MARINElife brought us a worthy challenge: to bring digital into the charity for the first time to increase public interaction and aid their goal of protecting endangered species of dolphins.
The results took the form of designing and developing a public citizen science website aimed at getting the community involved in spotting and capturing images of the white-beaked dolphins from the South West coast of England.
With this new tool, anyone can snap a picture of a dolphin on their phone and share it directly with the MARINElife team. From there, it is saved and matched against their new digitised database we created, so they can identify the particulars of that individual dolphin against a wider population.
We were keen to help raise awareness of MARINElife and encourage the community to take an active role in photographing the dolphins, which meant partnering with the charity on a PR campaign that attracted national coverage from the likes of the BBC and ITV, whilst raising the profile of a species that would benefit from more exposure and protection from conservationists.
Our data management tool is currently being tested on the white-beaked dolphin population of Lyme Bay and it’s humbling to know that we’re helping aid the protection and conservation of it. Our tool will help researchers assess the wider environmental factors that affect where these dolphins appear, such as rising sea temperatures.