Interested Individuals, Students and Teachers, Community Organizations

Canada doesn’t currently have a nationwide ecological monitoring system that provides a national picture of the state of our natural resources and changes in the conditions affecting environmental or human health. This is why the Ecological Monitoring and Assessment Network Coordinating Office (EMAN CO), along with its partners is trying to coordinate monitoring and research activities throughout Canada. We do not yet fully understand how environmental stressors such as global warming, acid rain, and invasive species are affecting our Canadian ecosystems.

Environment Canada’s Ecological Monitoring and Assessment Network (EMAN) needs your help in collecting information on our natural environment. No matter what the goals of your ecological monitoring project are (education, protection, impact assessment, management etc.), EMAN offers a diverse range of monitoring tools providing interested individuals, students, teachers and community organizations with the information they need to monitor the natural environment. This information is available on-line or by contacting the EMAN Coordinating Office.

Increasing participation in our national programmes such as NatureWatch can increase the geographical coverage of monitoring information and early detection of change. This can lead to the communication of status and trends, providing timely information to scientists and decision-makers about environmental changes that may require further attention. Analysis can also lead to recommendations about ways to create a better environment for all Canadians.

Ecological monitoring programmes can provide information on local changes and desired ecosystem attributes, help create awareness about environmental issues and is an excellent hands-on learning environment for participants.
If you are interested in starting a monitoring project, you will need to decide what you are interested in monitoring in your environment (clean water, healthy soil, wildlife etc). Pick the monitoring program that will allow you to track any changes. Choose the monitoring protocols to learn how to collect the information based on your own monitoring goals and field experience (for example if you are researching frogs for an undergraduate thesis – use the Ecological Monitoring and Assessment Network (EMAN) Ecosystem Monitoring Protocols for Anuran Species Richness and Calling Phenology whereas if you are encouraging a school group to learn about frogs – use FrogWatch).  Then decide where your monitoring project will occur (i.e. your backyard, a natural area close by etc.). Collect data by following the data collection procedures outlined in the protocol and/or program. Once data collection is complete, you can share your data with EMAN and compare your results to what others have found.

If you have already done or are currently conducting an ecological monitoring project, please share your data and information with EMAN.

Small electronic data sets can be shared via email to File Transfer Protocol (FTP) areas for sharing data, and a distributed data network are other ways to share and become a part of the data network within EMAN. Hard copies of data can also faxed to (905) 336-4499 or mailed to the following location:

Ecological Monitoring and Assessment Network Coordinating Office
Environment Canada 
Canada Centre for Inland Waters 
867 Lakeshore Road 
Burlington, Ontario, CANADA 
L7R 4A6