The principle aim of the National Waterbug Blitz was to bring together existing Waterwatch style programs from around Australia and provide them a shared set of waterbug identification and waterway assessment resources. Coupled with an annual event, this provides a snapshot of the health of waterways nationally This task is complicated by:
-different states identifying their waterbugs to different taxonomic levels
-different groups of people having different amounts of time that they are prepared to spend volunteering for the program
This paper introduces techniques that have the potential to turn these impediments into data of appropriate quality for assessing waterways, while engaging and educating users.
The National Waterbug Blitz uses three tiers of activity, each subsequent level more complicated than the previous:
A variety of quality control procedures, managed through an associated app, allow novice data to sit alongside that of experienced waterbug monitoring volunteers and contribute to waterway assessments.