Community Science Opportunities

Be a community scientist by getting involved with our ongoing research projects!

City Nature Challenge

Invented by community science staff at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County (Lila Higgins) and California Academy of Sciences (Alison Young). The City Nature Challenge is an international effort for people to find and document plants and wildlife in cities across the globe. It’s a bioblitz-style competition where cities are in a contest against each other to see who can make the most observations of nature, who can find the most species, and who can engage the most people.

Thank you to everyone who participated in the 2022 City Nature Challenge!

Freshwater Mussels of Connecticut Project

Freshwater mussels are one of the most imperiled groups of animals in the United States. Nearly 35 species have gone extinct in the last 100 years. Today, of the 12 freshwater mussel species found in Connecticut, seven are endangered, threatened, or are species of concern.

Fall 2022 Training

You can help with the conservation of these animals by participating in the Freshwater Mussels of Connecticut Project! During a virtual training on September 15 at 7 p.m., volunteers will learn the life history of freshwater mussels, their ecological importance, and how to collect and upload data.

Once trained, volunteers are able to contribute to the project independently or they are invited to join us at a local stream to collect data together on Saturday, September 17. 

Click Here to Register for the Virtual Training on September 15 at 7 p.m.

Frog Watch U.S.A.

Frogs and toads play a crucial role in wetland ecosystems and are considered indicators of environmental health. Many frog and toad populations have been in decline, and it is important to understand the scope, geographic scale, and cause of these declines. FrogWatch U.S.A. is a national community science project run through A.Z.A. focused on inspiring conservation through education. Once volunteers are trained to identify frogs by their unique calls, they select a local wetland to monitor through the spring and summer. We have partnered with Yale's Peabody Museum of Natural History and Connecticut's Beardsley Zoo to form the Peabody-Beardsley-Maritime Chapter.

Thank you to everyone who joined us for our 2022 training sessions!

Horseshoe Crab Tagging

tagged Horseshoe crab swimming along the bottom of a tank.

This tag-and-release research/education project focuses on population ecology of the horseshoe crab (Limulus polyphemus) in Long Island Sound.

Jennifer Mattei of Sacred Heart University's Biology Department is the principle investigator of this long-term community-wide research project. The Maritime Aquarium participates by training volunteers to tag and collect data on horseshoe crabs encountered during field studies.

Horseshoe crabs have great ecological and biomedical importance. Survival of migratory shorebirds has been linked to the horseshoe crab's breeding season as these birds depend on horseshoe crab eggs as a food source to fuel a 9,000-mile migration. Additionally, a component in horseshoe crab blood is used to detect bacterial contamination in manufactured drugs and other pharmaceutical products. By understanding the population dynamics of this species, we will be better able to manage their harvest and prevent their extinction.

Thank you to everyone who joined our Spring 2022 training sessions!

Terrapin Tracking Team

The Diamondback Terrapin (Malaclemys t. terrapin) is a species of special concern in the state of Connecticut. One of the greatest threats to turtles, including the diamondback terrapin, is road mortality. In an effort to mitigate car strikes, The Terrapin Tracking Project was developed by The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP), The Connecticut Department of Transportation, The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk, and Western Connecticut State University. Trained citizen scientists are assigned a coastal roadway to monitor for terrapin mortalities once a week from April through August. Trained monitors need to be 18 years or older. Children can accompany a trained adult. 

Thank you to everyone who joined us for our 2022 training sessions!

Our Mission

Mission: The Maritime Aquarium inspires people of all ages to appreciate and protect the Long Island Sound ecosystem and the global environment through living exhibits, marine science, and environmental education.

Contact Us

Open Daily 10:00 am - 5:00 pm

Phone: (203) 852-0700

10 North Water Street
Norwalk, CT 06854

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