Field Notes: The Polar Field Services Newsletter

A New Type of Snowbird

Tweeting Snow Depth

Photographs of snow crystals taken by William Bentley. Click on the image to find out more about William "Snowflake" Bentley.

There was a time when “snowbird” referred to retirees fleeing the northern states for southern climes during the winter months. Not anymore. If you love snow as much as we (and our colleagues and friends in the far north) do, you’ll appreciate the Snowtweets project, brainchild of Dr. Richard Kelly. Associate Professor and President of the Eastern Snow Conference, Department of Geography and Environmental Management, University of Waterloo in Ontario, Canada.

Snowtweets wants you to tweet (via Twitter) the snow depth of your home, recreation areas, or work spots. The data specialists at Snowtweets will incorporate your measurements into their data base and pass them through to a visualization package called Snowbird (an Adobe Air application). Snowbird posts the snow depth on a representation of the globe (e.g. Blue Marble). This information will help the scientists with their remote sensing and model estimates.

How deep is it where you are? Tweet your depth to the Snowbird project. Photo: Jeff Walker

It’s easy to participate. Simply go to the Snowbird site and follow the instructions to sign up. All you need is a (free) Twitter account.

And pass this post along. The goal is to reach out to long-term participants (universities, schools, research centres, community/professional groups) who have an interest in contributing for professional/academic/educational reasons.