University of Minnesota
University of Minnesota
College of Biological Sciences

Citizen Science Projects

Citizen science projects are a great way for people of all backgrounds - scientific or not - to connect with nature and contribute to important scientific research on a regular basis. We are actively working on expanding our citizen science projects and hope that you'll join us on one or more of these special opportunities! Most projects involve a training day as well as a regular commitment to collect data. The time commitment varies by project and can be adjusted somewhat to fit your schedule. This is a great opportunity to participate in scientific research and to earn hours you may need for Master Naturalist or similar volunteer programs.

Youth under 18 must be accompanied by an adult. Contact Caitlin ( or 612-301-2602) to learn more.


Red-headed Woodpecker Recovery Project

The Red-headed Woodpecker Recovery Project (RhWR) is a program of the Audubon Chapter of Minneapolis. Since 2008, RhWR citizen scientists have monitored and conducted research in Cedar Creek’s oak savannas to learn more about woodpecker nesting and habitat preferences, breeding behavior and brood rearing. This project is particularly notable since red-headed woodpeckers are in decline throughout Minnesota and the rest of their range, but seem to be stable here at Cedar Creek. Throughout the summer, trained volunteer citizen scientists survey specific areas of the oak savanna and collect data for the project. More information about RhWR and ways in which interested community members can get involved can be found at the project’s webpage or follow along at Details on trainings as well as guided hikes and other special project events can be found on our Upcoming Events page



Cedar Creek Wildlife Survey Project 

The Cedar Creek Wildlife Survey (CCWS) is a citizen science project started in summer 2016 in cooperation with Jonathan Poppele and the Minnesota Wildlife Tracking Project ( The goal of CCWS is to connect participants with nature and the world around them, survey the diversity of wildlife on the Cedar Creek property, and provide Cedar Creek scientists with valuable data about our wildlife. Surveys take place once a season, with other events and tracking classes scattered throughout the year. No tracking experience necessary – come learn this new skill and then put it to use on Cedar Creek’s sand roads! Please contact Caitlin ( ) for more information on upcoming training opportunities and survey days, and to be added to the information list for project events. 

You can read about recent surveys on the Minnesota Tracking Project's blog posts below:

Summer 2018

Spring 2018

Winter 2018

Fall 2017


Minnesota Bumble Bee Survey

Help us help bumble bees across the state! This project, coordinated by the U of M Bee Squad and U of M Extension and offered at Cedar Creek in partnership with the Xerces Society, has been running since 2007. At Cedar Creek, volunteers learn how to collect and identify bees, identify flowering plants, and contribute to a statewide effort to understand and protect our native pollinators! No experience is necessary and all ages aPlease contact Caitlin ( ) for more information or to RSVP. 2018 survey dates are June 29th (3-5pm), July 20th (3-5pm) and August 17th (3-5pm). 




Coming soon.... Phenology monitoring!