The City of Edmonton has launched an app to help residents identify noxious weeds, making it easier for them to be reported to the appropriate authorities.

The Alberta Weed Spotter helps Albertans identify and report noxious and invasive weeds – it includes 75 species currently regulated under the Alberta Weed Control Act.

Images of weeds in the app have been separated into categories such as flowering, grass-like, and tree or shrub-type weeds.

Officials said the app is meant to help improve weed management decisions, and help make responses to new weed infestations in Alberta quicker.

Currently, the app is available only to Apple iPhone users, and can be found through iTunes.

The city is developing an Andriod-compatible version of the app, in addition to making the information available through open data.

The app was created as part of a Master’s degree project at Athabasca University, by Elinam R. Hini, under the supervision of Dr. Sabine Graf with the School of Computing and Information Systems. It was funded by the City of Edmonton’s office of biodiversity, Forestry Beautification and Environmental Management section, and the Government of Alberta.

To report noxious weeds, residents are asked to contact their local authorities responsible for weed management, in Edmonton, they should call 311 – a mobile application to file weed complaints is planned in the future.