Seabird App Takes Flight at Oregon Islands National Wildlife Refuge
New Game-Based App Brings Seabird Education and Fun to Yaquina Head
Newport, OR – Ushering in an era of digital engagement and fun for the millions of smartdevice-carrying visitors to Oregon’s spectacular coast, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, in partnership with the Bureau of Land Management and Friends of Yaquina Lighthouses, is launching an interactive, place-based app. The public is invited to the launch party at 10 AM on Sunday, June 21st at Yaquina Head Outstanding Natural Area in Newport. Called “Discover Yaquina”, the game based app will teach visitors about the diverse seabirds, marine mammals, rocky shore habitats and creatures that make the Oregon Coast such a vibrant and wondrous ecological system.
Developed by Discover Nature Apps, an award winning mission-driven app developer, the “Discover Yaquina” game includes a GPS-guided nature-based scavenger hunt; the ability for users to post and view field tips and photographs; and the opportunity to share their experiences on social media. The app is free; simply search for “Discover Nature Apps” on iTunes or Google Play Store.
To play the “Discover Yaquina” game, users must be at Yaquina Head. People visiting as a group can compete against one another, or families can opt to work as a team. Beyond the game, the app offers opportunities for users to capture photos of their discoveries at Yaquina Head including field notes such as where they are seeing Black Oystercatchers or Bald Eagles. The discoveries, notes and photos are viewable in a digital photo gallery that will be accessible worldwide.
“With this app, we can reach exponentially more coastal visitors and residents with a fun and interactive experience that leaves them with a greater awareness and appreciation of Oregon Coast’s seabirds and their habitats,” said Dawn Harris, Visitor Services Manager for the Oregon Coast National Wildlife Refuge Complex. “Until now, we’ve been limited in the ways we can deliver the information we know they’ll value in a way that’s both compelling and entertaining.”