Journal archives for November 2021

November 20, 2021

Get on board the new Xmas beetle project

Unsure how many of you have seen it, but there's a new Xmas beetle project operating at the moment:

It's a collection, so obviously nothing extra needed on your end from the admin point of views, but if you can would be great to try boost your obs over this summer :) All IDs welcome of course too

Note that it's not just Anoplognathus being collected, but also Calloodes, Cyclocephala, Repsimus and Xylonichus.

Tagging all the beetle usuals that haven't joined the project yet (I know I've missed heaps of people, so apologies in advance...)

@reiner @twan3253 @johneichler @vicfazio3 @nicklambert @rhytiphora @ellurasanctuary @imcmaster @johnlenagan @d_kurek @matthew_connors @cesdamess @dhobern @kenharris @cher63 @martinlagerwey @dianneclarke @ianmcmillan @dustaway @tjeales

Posted on November 20, 2021 12:06 AM by thebeachcomber thebeachcomber | 2 comments | Leave a comment

November 25, 2021

The Big Bushfire BioBlitz!

We have some exciting news! Across February and March next year, UNSW's Centre for Ecosystem Science is running three BioBlitzes across NSW to help build on the Environment Recovery Project, and bolster the already amazing data collected by the iNat community in the wake of the 2019/2020 Black Summer bushfire season. There'll be three back-to-back weekends of bugs, birds, bats and everything in between, with the aim to survey adjacent burnt and unburnt areas at three key locations across NSW.

We've partnered up with the Atlas of Living Australia, the Australian Citizen Science Association, Minderoo's Fire & Flood Resilience Initiative, and the Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment, and have a fantastic line-up of passionate experts that will be joining in and sharing their amazing knowledge.

The first event will be in the Blue Mountains from 25-27 February 2022, followed by Washpool NP in northern NSW from 4-6 March, and then Murramarang NP on the south coast from 11-13 March. You can register for any of the events at this link, and join the umbrella project (and any of the sub-projects) here.

If you have any questions at all, feel free to pop them in the comments below, or contact either @alpine_flora_of_australia or myself. I look forward to seeing you in the field!

Posted on November 25, 2021 04:01 AM by thebeachcomber thebeachcomber | 3 comments | Leave a comment

GSB2021 wrap-up

With the GSB done and dusted for a second year, Sydney put in another fantastic showing, finishing up with ~3500 observations of almost 1600 species, contributed by over 230 observers. All of these numbers are big improvements on last year's event, with +600 observations, +420 species, and +80 observers! This last stat is probably the most exciting for me; that the number of observers increased by 50% in just one year is great to see given one of the GSB's main focuses is to drive greater participation in biodiversity citizen science. Compared to the inaugural GSB in 2020, we maintained our impressive position of 5th spot overall for most species seen (even with an extra 100+ cities/regions participating!), and surged into 2nd place for number of observers.

The most observed species was the flannel flower, followed by the large flying duck orchid and the bluestriped goatfish. Across the top 10 most observed species, we had four flowering plants, two fishes, two birds, a lizard and a spider.

Here are some of the highlights:

Two powerful owls (listed as Vulnerable in NSW) seen by @deanmc.

A female gang-gang cockatoo (listed as Endangered in NSW) hanging out in a tree hollow, seen by @katieoconnor.

A koala (one of only 34 observed in Greater Sydney on iNat!) seen by @catherinegrenfell.

A fern-leaf spider flower in bloom (a Near Threatened species restricted to the Sydney Basin), seen by @porcoespinho15.

A stunning macro shot of a flying peacock spider by @adri_losso.

We also had three observations of species that had never been uploaded to iNaturalist before!
One of these was Gigantowales chisholmi, a stunning native millipede seen by @helensmith.

The other two were insects I was lucky enough to find myself. Both of these were assassin bugs:

Nebriscus pupus, found washed up on a beach.

Veledella raptrix found at night in an urban bushland reserve.

This is just a small sample of the awesome observations uploaded for Sydney, so if anyone has any others they would like to see featured here, please let me know and I'll add them to the post.

A huge thanks is also needed for all the users who helped identify our observations; without them, many observations would not have made it to species. The top identifiers for this year were @cynthia_c @bwjone432155 @adrian2370 @biniek-io @ben_travaglini @eschlogl @marcoduretto @cesdamess @george_seagull @sofiazed1 @predomalpha @mmmr91 @pennywort_man @spyne

Everyone can be very proud of their efforts; here's to an even bigger and better GSB next year!

Posted on November 25, 2021 05:52 AM by thebeachcomber thebeachcomber | 4 comments | Leave a comment