Dear devoted Snapshot Serengeti ID-ers: I know the last couple weeks have been tough, especially with the appearance of those two words that strike fear into the heart of every Serengeti addict (I mean ID-er): “We’re done.”
Well, we’ve got good news for you: we’re not really done. Like Margaret wrote the other day, we expected to have several weeks (or more!) to prepare Season 4 for posting. We hadn’t really expected to you guys to process three seasons of images in one week. Clearly. So, it’s been a bit of a scramble…but we’re finally ready to give you Season 4. Even cooler? Yours will be the first eyes to really take a look at these photos.
Prior to launching Snapshot Serengeti, Seasons 1-3 had been looked at by a small group of volunteers on a prototype application called “Serengeti Live.” We’ve been able to use the preliminary data to start answering research questions, refine our analytical methods, and show funding agencies that this project is really cool and worth continuing. However, each image had only been looked at once, so there were a lot of mistakes, which is why we still needed your help with those Seasons.
But Season 4 has never been seen before. It contains all the photographs collected during my last field season in Serengeti – February through July 2012. The rains were pretty bad that season – I can’t tell you how many times I got stuck in the mud trying to get to those cameras. Oh, yeah, and the neighbor’s outdoor toilet (choo in Swahili) sunk. But with the rains came the wildebeest, who honked/mooed (I don’t think there is a word for the sounds they make) outside our homes at night. And in July I lugged back a huge, dust-covered hard drive full of photos.
With every SD card I collect, I do some basic error-checking – so I’ve taken a very cursory flip through the photos and tried to trim down the number of “broken camera” shots of the dirt, grass, or sky, as well as some of the “lawn-mowing” images. But other than that, this is unexplored territory. These photos are new, unseen, unexplored…you’re the first!
I’m excited to see what you find.