Museum teams with IBM to create an app with a difference

There’s not much that can’t be done with phones these days.

You can surf the web, book accommodation, watch TV, listen to the radio, and believe it or not, make and receive phone calls.

But this takes things to a whole new level.

On Friday a new app, developed by the Australian Museum in partnership with IBM, was launched and while it is a bit different, the reason for the app is more than justified.

The free app is at the heart of Australia’s first national frog count, so everyone can join in to help save one of the most threatened groups of animals on Earth.

The FrogID app identifies frog species by the special sounds they make – from croaks and chirps, to whistles, ribbits, peeps, barks and grunts.

It has been designed for Australians to record frog calls in their backyard and at nearby parks, creeks, dams, streams and wetlands.

Recording and uploading these unique calls via the app will help identify different frog species across the country, and map where they are most at risk from habitat loss, disease, climate change and urbanisation.

Australia has 240 different species of frogs, many of which are under threat. Hundreds of frog species have already disappeared around the world and many more are on the edge of extinction.

Declining frog populations have serious impacts on the health of Australia’s waterways and ecosystems, with the animals known to be early indicators of the effects of climate change on our environment.