Category: Ecological Monitoring and Surveys

Toogimbie IPA Vegetation and Bird Surveys

comments Comments Off on Toogimbie IPA Vegetation and Bird Surveys
By , May 21, 2014 10:06 am
Bladder SaltbushAustralian Wildlife Services undertook bird and vegetation surveys on Toogimbie Indigenous Protected Area (IPA) in April. Toogimbie are using their cultural access licence (water) as well as revegetation and pest management strategies to rehabilitate their wetlands. The wetlands have cultural and environmental significance in the region. Surveys focused on birds and wetland vegetation, in particular setting up of long-term monitoring transects and collection of baseline data. The Toogimbie Rangers will then be able to repeat the surveys over time to show environmental change as a result of their land management activities. Opportunistic records of frogs were also collected. Further surveys are still needed in bats, reptiles, mammals and water quality pending funding. Indigenous Protected Areas across Australia need more scientific support to undertake a range of environmental improvement activities. More information on Toogimbie IPA and the Nari Nari Tribal Council.
Toogimbie

Toogimbie

Volunteer bird surveys in Canberra – Silver Gulls, Superb Parrots and CSIRO Tree watching

comments Comments Off on Volunteer bird surveys in Canberra – Silver Gulls, Superb Parrots and CSIRO Tree watching
By , December 12, 2012 1:53 pm
AWS staff member, Jenny Smits, has been running around Canberra undertaking various volunteer surveys for the Canberra Ornithological Group and the CSIRO. Surveys include targeted surveys for superb parrots within areas touted to become new suburbs in Canberra's north, and landscape connectivity surveys where the role of paddock trees are being assessed in the movement of birds across the landscape. Jenny Smits was also able to help Chris Davey assess the breeding Silver Gull population on Spiniker Island, Lake Burley Griffin, on 14 December. P1040120 P1020708 P1020675 P1020683 P1020684

Annual Reptile Trapping Event, Angas Downs IPA, November 2012

comments Comments Off on Annual Reptile Trapping Event, Angas Downs IPA, November 2012
By , December 12, 2012 1:29 pm
  Strophurus elderi Jewelled geckoAustralian Wildlife Services and the Angas Downs IPA Rangers battled the 41 - 45 degree heat this November 2012 to undertake the annual reptile and small mammal surveys. Pitfall and funnel traps were used along 25 m fence lines, as well as active searches. 40-41 reptile species were recorded over a week and a half. No small mammals were captured, indicating a significant crash in populations after the recent boom. The surveys allow yearly monitoring of small mammal and reptile species on Angas Downs. So far, each trapping event has found additional species for Angas Downs' reptile checklists. New species this year included Stimson's Python,  Jeweled Gecko, Burton Legless Lizard and a Woma (unconfirmed - black and white remote camera). See the photos for a taste.

Aerial surveys on Angas Downs 2012

comments Comments Off on Aerial surveys on Angas Downs 2012
By , November 15, 2012 10:03 am
Annual aerial survey monitoring was conducted  on Angas Downs IPA in July 2012. These surveys complement surveys also conducted in 2010 & 2011. IPA Rangers and Jennifer Smits (AWS) counted animals seen at low level and 200 m on either side of the aircraft. Species targeted /observed included camels, kangaroos, horses and cattle. These studies are vital to understanding populations of kangaroos and pressures from camel and horse populations on the property and hence native wildlife. Some results are published below. No significant increase or decrease in any of the surveyed species was recorded between 2010-2012. Since Angas Downs is such a vast area to survey, the variance and error of the datasets collected make it difficult to assess any significant change in the estimated population density. Good thing is Malu (red kangaroo) populations appear to be stable, and feral populations of horses and camels are appear to be decreasing (or not significantly increasing), undoubtedly due to the management actions of the IPA rangers. Densities of red kangaroos across Angas were estimated at 1.02 per sq km in 2010, and 1.13 per sq km in 2012. It was found that the southern area of the property was much more productive and watered, and supported more head of kangaroos than the northern sand dunes. Hence the aerial surveys were split in the north and south for 2012. A report is being finalised and will be available soon. For more information on past Aerial surveys click here.  

Camera Trapping Colloquium in Wildlife Management and Research, Taronga Zoo

comments Comments Off on Camera Trapping Colloquium in Wildlife Management and Research, Taronga Zoo
By , October 4, 2012 11:03 am
[Not a valid template]Australian Wildlife Services' George Wilson and Jen Smits joined 200 camera trap researchers from all over the world at Taronga Zoo last week at the world's first camera trapping colloquium. The event was co-hosted by the Australasian Wildlife Management Society, Royal Zoological Society of NSW, the Invasive Animals CRC and sponsor WWF-Australia. Camera trapping is rapidly being adopted for diverse monitoring purposes, from wildlife research and management to asset protection. They are a useful tool for both species detection and wildlife behavioural studies. AWS has been trialing some remote infrared cameras on Angas Downs in Southern Northern Territory to detect feral species and understand native and feral species interactions. For more general information on Camera trapping in Australia visit feral.org.au.

Canberra Institute of Technology students visit Angas for surveys

comments Comments Off on Canberra Institute of Technology students visit Angas for surveys
By , October 2, 2012 3:31 pm
Canberra Institute of Technology (CIT) student volunteers visited Angas Downs Indigenous Protected Area in Sept 2012 to help undertake reptile, bird, track and mammal surveys. The students were helped by Australian Wildlife Services' Jenny Smits to learn the various survey techniques. The field trip was part of CIT Diploma in Ecology course 'Field Studies'. Well done to all, a hugely successful trip for us. See the facebook page for more info and photos.    

Remote IR Cameras and Foxes on Angas Downs IPA, Northern Territory

comments Comments Off on Remote IR Cameras and Foxes on Angas Downs IPA, Northern Territory
By , August 21, 2012 2:33 pm
AWS staff and Angas Downs rangers have installed some remote infrared cameras across Angas Downs to capture native and pest animal movements to watering points. The cameras, 12 MP Acorn LT1  Night Vision cameras, have a blue flash that is invisible to animals. It records photos and videos in both day and night mode. Captures include kangaroos, birds, horses, cattle, camels, emus, dingos, cats and foxes. Foxes hadn't previously been identified as occurring in the area until these remote cameras were put in. Beautiful videos of Emus, Bronzewings, Hooded robins, a Little Eagle, Wedgetails, Brown Goshawks, Major Mitchell's Cockatoo checking themselves out in the water reflection, and Bourke's parrots are some of the bird highlights. The rangers will use the cameras to make management decisions such as where to set cat traps and to see which waters are important for native species and kuka (game species). The cameras will be even more successful when the landscape dries up.

Click here to see the Angas Downs remote camera video on youtube.com

ABC Country Hour also reported on Angas' use of remote cameras - click here for transcript and audio.

 

ABC Interview on Red Kangaroos on Angas Downs

comments Comments Off on ABC Interview on Red Kangaroos on Angas Downs
By , June 26, 2012 3:02 pm
Local NT ABC Radio reporter Caddie Brain interviews Dr George Wilson, Australian Wildlife Services about kangaroos on Angas Downs IPA... Click here  for the transcript and to listen to the story. " The team from Angas Downs Station are working hard to increase red kangaroo numbers on the former pastoral property. Rangers are reinstalling water points, undertaking aerial surveying and developing the facilities to become a release site for recovering roos who have fallen on some back luck (fenced roo enclosure). Dr Wilson says the roo enclosure will became an educational tool and tourist attraction. "It's amazing, there's very few places in Australia where tourists can reliably see red kangaroos in the wild yet it's our national emblem. But the display is only part of a broader land management strategy to increase numbers on the property." "Eventually, with the support of the local Indigenous community, we'll develop a sustainable hunting regime. This property is here to blend their continuing traditional needs with science."

Buffel Grass Surveys, Angas Downs

comments Comments Off on Buffel Grass Surveys, Angas Downs
By , June 12, 2012 11:15 am
Buffel grass presence / absence surveys began in June 2012 on Angas Downs IPA. The survey can be redone next year to show how buffel is expanding or not. It will be interesting to see how quickly it takes to increase from a few plants to a dense patch. If a fast increase in plant density is shown, controlling single plants may be beneficial. The rangers drive the tracks and roads and enter into Cybertracker where they see single plants, a few plants or dense patches. The survey will be finished in July 2012.  

Angas Downs Reptile and Bird Species Checklists

comments Comments Off on Angas Downs Reptile and Bird Species Checklists
By , April 17, 2012 3:22 pm
[Not a valid template]Reptile and Birding checklists for Angas Downs IPA current to March 2012 are now available through the AWS website. The tally to date is 99 bird species observed (includes vagrant species) and 51 reptiles species. Angas Downs is an excellent diverse landscape and we are slowly learning its potential as a sustainable use conservation area. Angas Downs Reptile Checklist (897 downloads) Angas Downs Birding Checklist (903 downloads) Also see Angas Downs Reptile Surveys