Secchi Disk Citizen Science Study

Dr. Kirby deploying the Secchi Disk
Around the world, sailors and other seafarers are lowering round, 30 cm white disks into the sea from the side of their boats to study the oceans phytoplankton. The disk the seafarers are using is called a Secchi Disk and it is named after the Pope’s astronomer who invented it in 1865, and the seafarers are all citizen scientists taking part in the Secchi Disk study ( The first data from this global study has just been published in The Public Library of Science ONE (PLOS ONE) and the Secchi Disk Seafarers are collective authors. The paper reveals importantly, not only that seafarers are good citizen scientists, but also that their measurements of the phytoplankton in the sea may be vital to helping us better understand the oceans’ changing biology.
Fishermen are vital to repeat measurement in the same locations.
Phytoplankton viewed microscopically
Project Ambassador Yachtswoman Susie Goodall
Project Leader Richard Kirby
Secchi disk
Secchi Disk under water
Project logo
Secchi Disk Reporting App
Secchi Disk Main App Menu
How to make Secchi Disk 1
How to make Secchi Disk 2
How to use Secchi Disk App
How to use Secchi Disk 2
Secchi Disk App screen