More peatlands in Wikiverse

Wikipedians visit GMC

20/06/2023 On a three-day NaTour from June 9th to 11th, visitors from the Wikipedia universe came to the Greifswald Mire Centre (GMC). The common idea: exchange knowledge and offer and develop more content about peatlands with articles, images or data on the various platforms around Wikipedia. On the one hand, this strengthens the ecology contributions on Wikipedia and, on the other hand, makes knowledge about peatlands and their importance for climate protection available to more people.

There were four free and public workshops on Friday: firstly, know-how from the Wikipedians for those interested - from an introduction to the Wiki world to instructions for writing articles, uploading images to Wikimedia Commons and getting to know Wikidata. In the evening, Franziska Tanneberger, director of the Greifswald Mire Center, presented this in more detail for the Wikipedians in an hour.

Saturday and Sunday were full of moorland know-how for the five visitors. The start was on the restored Karrendorfer Wiesen coastal floodplain, which is partly a nature reserve. Grazing and seasonal flooding have formed an anthropozoogenic salt grassland here, a type of peatland that today only occurs in a few places on the Lagoon coast in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. In the afternoon we continued to a test area for cattail cultivation on Lake Kummerow. Here, the PaludiPROGRESS project at the University of Greifswald is researching how cattail species can be grown in paludiculture as economic crops and raw material suppliers, for example for insulation and building materials or packaging materials. The area offered an open-air lecture on measuring greenhouse gas emissions using hoods or Eddy-Covariance-towers.

A dense program on Sunday: How plant growth and water levels are related and analyzed with regard to emissions from soils could be found out at the fully automated mesocosm facility at the Institute of Botany and Landscape Ecology (LaÖk) at the University of Greifswald. “Moor Pope” Hans Joosten welcomed the Wikipedians in the Program Library for Peatlands and Nature Conservation (PeNCIL). With more than 25,000 publications, this library offers some GLAM potential on the peatland topic. The Wikipedians found out how much the ongoing drought can threaten current research in the peat moss laboratory of the LaÖk Institute, where a dozen species of peat moss are bred and examined. After more than two months without precipitation, the rain barrels for irrigation water were almost empty. If the drought continues, we will have to make our own rainwater, say the scientists. In this context, cultural traditions such as rain songs were also remembered. The intensive weekend made it clear: the visit was just a prelude. In addition to the Wiki entries and images that were edited during the visit (see documentation), the next step will be an online lecture by Wikipedia colleague Daniel Mietchen at the GMC. This highlights further possibilities for more freely available moor knowledge in the Wikiverse.

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