Camera Trapping

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Monday, March 18, 2013

Weed Wars continue along the Avon River

Over the last year or so Wheatbelt NRM has been mapping and eradicating Bridal Creeper and Small Flower Tamarisk infestations along the Avon River -  and we are now looking to share our new knowledge and useful experiences from these activities with the wider community.


How do you get a handle on invasive weeds growing along a major watercourse?

What do you do when you find a nasty infestation of Bridal Creeper  (Asparagus asparagoides) climbing over your back fence?

Treated Small Flower Tamarisk
 Does the Avon community need to tackle Weeds of National  Significance like Bridal Creeper and Small Flower Tamarisk (Tamarisk parviflora) growing along the Avon River?

 How do you eradicate a Small Flower Tamarisk plant over 5m high and 7m across??

 
 These are just some of the questions that will be answered at the Weed Wars & The Great Escape workshop in York on Saturday 27th April 2013.

This exciting weekend workshop will provide participants with an opportunity to:
  • learn up-to-date- techniques for managing Weeds of National Significance (WONS) in the Avon region
  • identify Bridal Creper and Small Flower Tamarisk, 
  • hear from experienced weed controllers about control efforts undertaken so far along the Avon! 

 

  NEWS FLASH!

Josh Byrne (from ABC TV) will be presenting at this workshop!!  

So come along and hear about how your efforts in your rural town garden can make a difference to the Weed War being waged Along the Avon River!

To find out more please visit the Weed Wars and The Great Escape website and register for the workshop.




Tuesday, February 19, 2013

What's in your Tech Toolbox?

Are you using new technologies on your farm, but don't know how to get maximum gain for your sustainable farming enterprise from all the new programs out there?

Or have you recently got an iPhone/iPad/Smart-phone and want to find out what tools you can access to improve the farming systems on your property?

Then the Tech Toolbox workshop may be just the thing for you!!

Kellerberrin and Quairading LCDC's in conjunction with Wheatbelt NRM Inc. are proud to be offering this free event to interested landholders within the Avon region.

Come along to Kellerberrin on 27th February, bring your iPhone/iPad or Smart-phone and learn about:
  • Technology 101
  • Technologies in today's machinery
  • Precision agriculture
  • selecting seedlings
  • and more.
The all-day event will put you in the drivers seat to take advantage of these new technologies, while hearing from representatives from:
  • Ag Excellence Alliance
  • Ag Implements
  • Precision Agronomics Australia
  • Wheatbelt NRM Inc.
  • Terran Imaging
  • local farmers
  • Landgate
  • CSIRO and more!
For more information visit the Wheatbelt NRM website Tech Toolbox page, or to register your interest, contact Tracey Hobbs (Shire of Kellerberrin) on 9045 4006 or nrmo@kellerberrin.wa.gov.au

The Tech Toolbox workshop is supported through funding from the Australian Government's Caring For Our Country program

Monday, November 26, 2012

Red-Tailed Phascogale found in Corrigin!



Staff at the Wheatbelt NRM office were somewhat surprised this week when Lynette, a landholder from Bullaring, rang to find out what to do with a Red-tailed Phascogale she had found at her house!

Unfortunately it was deceased, but it is still a great find, showing that this charasmatic native critter is still around the Corrigin/Bullaring area.

Red-tailed Phascogale (Phascogale calura) found near Corrigin

Lynette had seen them before at her property in Bullaring, but this time she decided to speak with Wheatbelt NRM’s Regional Landcare Facilitator Mick Davis, who encouraged Lynette to send in the above photo and then contacted the WA Museum for more information. 

Red-tailed Phascogales (also called Red-tailed Wambengers) are a threatened species of native Australian mammal, only occurring in Western Australia but now restricted to around the Great Southern region.

They prefer woodland habitat with dense pockets of sheoak thickets surrounding old white gum trees to use as nesting sites. However they also occur in mallee scrub and will use letterboxes and hous roof cavities as alternative nesting sites.

Distribution map for the Red-Tailed Phascogale.  Dark blue shows current distribution, orange previous distribution and light blue and black indicates fossil records

WA Museum Techincal Officer of Terrestrial Zoology (Vertebrates) Claire Stevenson was very excited by Lynette’s find.

“We haven’t had a Red-tailed Phascogale specimen at the Museum since 2007” she said, explaining that this record in near the edge of this species’ known range. Upon closer inspection of local data it was found that this species was right on the edge of it's know distribution.

The (frozen) specimen will now be sent to the WA Museum – where it will be properly preserved and added to the states collection, adding to the wider communities' knowledge and understanding of this unique species.

If you have seen these critters near you place or in your travels, let Wheatbelt NRM know by calling 089 670 3110 or emailing info@wheatbeltnrm.org.au

For more information on recovery actions for the Red-tailed Phascogale see the draft recovery plan on Wheatbelt NRM’s webpage.

Monday, November 19, 2012

BioBlitz leads to new web resource

The buzz is the 2012 Korrelocking BioBlitz was a great success!

Korrelocking BioBlitz Volunteers

Thanks to all the keen people who came along to join in this year, the Team Leaders who bravely led their groups into the wilds of Korrelocking and of course Phil and Sharon who put up with all the unusual comotion on their property!

For details on the current findings from the BioBlitz see the following media release or listen to the ABC radio interview here.
Little Eagle. Photo by Alan Throne

After a great weekend of adventure, social media updates, discovery and hopefully fun for all, the hard graft of getting together the BioBlitz report has begun.

The species lists are growing and the need for management of several issues within the reserve is growing apparent.

Flora Team. Photo by Vicki Warburton

Wheatbelt NRM has already recieved three requests for assistance from groups wishing to organise their own BioBlitz in 2013!

In response to these requests we created a new web-resource and tool kit, to assist any keen BioBlitz organisers out there.


There are some great tips for BioBlitz organisers on the new page, including some key questions, tips for finding leaders, tools to help find outmore about your area and some useful links to other resources.

Looking foward to the next BioBlitz


If you are keen to find out more, or get involved in biodiversity projects in and around the wheatbelt, contact Wheatbelt NRM on 9670 3100, info@wheatbetltnrm.org.au or www.wheatbeltnrm.org.au to find out more.





Thursday, October 4, 2012

New Groundwater Atlas available online!


The new Atlas of Groundwater Dependant Ecosystems is now live on the net!

This interactive tool, developed by the Beureau of Meteorology, allows anyone with internet access to look in their area to identify ecosystems that may be interacting with groundwater hydrological systems.
Screenshot of South Mortlock catchment GDE's from the Atlas

The GDE Atlas is the most comprehensive inventory of the location and characteristics of groundwater dependent ecosystems for Australia to date.

It incorporates multiple lines of scientific evidence including previous fieldwork, literature and mapping, and combines nation-wide layers of satellite remote sensing data. The physical characteristics that describe each ecosystem are also shown.

 

The GDE Atlas shows ecosystems that interact with:
  • the subsurface presence of groundwater, or
  • the surface expression of groundwater
These ecosystems include springs, wetlands, rivers and vegetation.

Long-neckd Tortoises are dependant on groundwater
If you, your group or research institution are considering a funding application or are looking for additional natural values to identify to potential funders as worth protecting (particularly in the Avon), then this website might just be for you.


For more information on Groundwater Dependant Ecosystems (GDE's) or waterway management in the Avon region contact Wheatbelt NRM on 9670 3100 or info@wheatbeltnrm.org.au

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Camera Trapping Colloquium

Are you one of the many people in the WA wheatbelt using a remote camera for wildlife management?

If so, the very first International Camera Trapping Colloquium might be just for you!

The Australasian Wildlife Management Society in collaboration with the Invasive Animals CRC and partners are hosting the Camera Trapping in Wildlife Management and Research Colloquium at the ANZ Lecture Theatre, Taronga Zoo, Sydney Australia, 13-14 September 2012.

A Chudich in eucalyptus woodland habitat, Beverley WA. Mike Griffiths & Phil Lewis WWF

The event is aimed at showcasing camera trapping technology and bringing together researchers and field ecologists to increase learning potentials.

Recent reserach applications for remote cameras will be investigated and tested during the Colloquium, which is good news for many wheatbelt species currently being monitored.

Populations of Black-flanked Rock Wallabies, Western Spiny-tailed Skinks and Malleefowl are being monitored by the community through Wheatbelt NRM's Healthy Bushland project.



Two WA people working in the region with remote cameras are presenting material at the Colloquium, WWF's Mike Griffiths (working with Phil Lewis on Citizen Science) and Murdoch University's Caron Macneall (on monitoring wildife allong corridors in the wheatbelt).

We wish Mike and Caron well over in Sydney and look forward to hearing more about camera trapping into the future.

If you want more info on camera trapping, check out new research findings at out 'Reports and Publications' page.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

WA Herbarium now open for business again

The Western Australian Herbarium has finally relocated all its facilities to the new $30 million WA Conservation Science Centre in Kensington, with most services restarted on 3rd August 2012. 


New Building
The WA Conservation Science Centre in Kensington
 
Most of the essential services that closed during the move are now operational again, these include:
  • Additions and updates to names on the Census of WA Plant Names;
  • Additions and updates to specimen data on the Herbarium’s specimen database WAHerb;
  • Related content that relies on the specimen database is now being updated, for example distribution maps;
  • FloraBase feedback forms.
Not all services are online yet, but this is a big step in the right direction for anyone in the Wheatbelt (or the rest of WA) who want's to get back to the Herbarium to lodge plants, volunteer or find out their plant ID's.

For a map of the new premises visit the DEC website.

If you are keen to utlise the Herbarium in your next community project, contact one of Wheatbelt NRM's Regional Landcare Facilitators, Mick Davis, on mdavis@wheatbetlnrm.org.au or Jo Wheeler on jwheeler@wheatbeltnrm.org.au

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

2012 Korrelocking BioBlitz!


This year Wheatbelt NRM is organising a BioBlitz in the Korrelocking Townsite, 230km east of Perth, to raise awareness of the need for increased management of remnant vegetation across the Western Australia's Wheatbelt.

The aim of the BioBlitz is to identify as many species as possible in a 24hr period (between 1pm Sat 22nd & 1pm Sun 23rd September 2012) and have fun while we're doing it!

Participants at the 2003 Moningarin BioBlitz

Spring in Korrelocking presents a chance to observe a diverse and functional ecosystem in action - a chance to appreciate the resilience of natural ecosystems to current practices.

After lunch on Sunday we will tally the lists and announce the total number of species that are found - then we begin the process of planning with the community how they wish to manage the bushland into the future.

So join us and experience your own wheatbelt adventure - visit  the Wheatbelt NRM website for additional camping and registration information.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Community Action Grants Announced!

Over $1.5 million dollars of projects were funded in Western Australia by the Australian Governments Community Action Grants.


Caring for our Country


Last friday the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, Senator the Hon. Joe Ludiwig, approved projects for groups that applied to do environmental works under the national incentive scheme.

To see a list of successful grantee's form WA, follow this link. 

Nation-wide the scheme funded $10.9 millon dollars worth of projects.

For more information see Wheatbelt NRM's website.


Thursday, July 12, 2012

Spiders walk along the Avon River

Trapdoor spiders often emerge from their burrows after rain - but why?

Newly matured male spiders emerge from their burrows and go looking for a mate, after spending anywhere from three to seven years living exclusively underground.

If you live in the micro-world, moist soil is perfect for digging in - so many types of juvenile trapdoor spider emerge after rains to start excavating their own private burrows. It's important for them to find a good spot, as they will stay there for life!!


This Mouse Spider (Missulena spp.) was walking along with purpose under some Jam (Acacia accuminata) trees down by the Avon River in Northam. He seems to know where to go, but he'd better look out - there's an army of obstacles for him to avoid, like:
  • large hungry centipedes looking for a bite to eat,
  • cunning wasps who would might carry them away;
  • sharp eyed magpies and butcher birds who watch for tasty spiders at dawn and dusk, and
  • racehorse goanna's and bandicoot's who can dig them out of their burrows!
No wonder he's moving so fast!


So, if you see a big spider walking along the ground this winter/autumn, spare a thought for the hard times it has overcome to get that far and take a moment to watch it go along on it's way.

Do feel free to take a picture though, and send it to info@wheatbeltnrm.org.au so Wheatbelt NRM can help you find out a bit more about it.

The last one we had someone ask us about was a brand new species all together!