Bumblebee friendly planting recommendations with citizen science data

Wibowo, Agung Toto; Siddharthan, Advaith; Anderson, Helen; Robinson, Annie; Sharma, Nirwan; Bostock, Helen; Salisbury, Andrew; Comont, Richard and van der Wal, René (2017). Bumblebee friendly planting recommendations with citizen science data. In: Proceedings of the International Workshop on Recommender Systems for Citizens, ACM, New York, NY, USA, article no. 4.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1145/3127325.3128330

Abstract

Several citizen science projects engage with the public around pollinator species, typically requesting data (e.g. in the form of photo-records of different species tagged by place and date). While such projects help scientists collect data, these data are rarely fed back to the public in any meaningful manner. In this paper, we address this through a recommender system based on Matrix Factorization over a matrix of observed bumblebee-plant interactions derived from data submitted to a citizen science project BeeWatch. The system recommends pollinator-friendly plants for domestic gardens and takes into account both the fact that different bumblebee species exhibit differing preferences for flowers, and that plants flower at different times of the year. The goal is to attract a range of bumblebee species to a garden and to ensure that these species have sufficient food sources through the season.

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