Journal archives for September 2021

September 09, 2021

iNaturalist Advanced tips and tricks presentation

Thomas Mesaglio teaches more about iNaturalist - Annotations, adding additional metadata, shortcuts to URL editing, adding and finding hidden coordinates, adding new species to database, finding graphs for peak growth periods of plants, embedding photos in comments and more. youtu.be/Hcv_TVhaUVw

Posted on September 09, 2021 01:54 AM by barv barv | 0 comments | Leave a comment

Threatened Species Day & Biodiversity Month - SE NSW workshops

SE NSW Workshops include Black Glossies and feed trees, saving Kangaloon Sun Orchid, Rebuilding Rainforests in Milton, Post Bushfire Recovery actions and response for threatened flora, and more. Details and bookings https://mailchi.mp/environment/check-out-these-threatened-species-day-events-10440160

Posted on September 09, 2021 02:07 AM by barv barv | 0 comments | Leave a comment

September 10, 2021

Gang-gang research - expanded to South Coast

This successful research project in the ACT has expanded to South Coast.
Follow this link for clear instructions and handy tips for finding, photographing and posting gang-gangs!
https://atlasoflife.org.au/gang-gang-nesting-project

Posted on September 10, 2021 01:17 AM by barv barv | 0 comments | Leave a comment

September 13, 2021

Dead Tree Dectective

We've just discovered that there is a project to collect observations of dead or dying trees around Australia. Given our recent bushfires and the impact of these on our local ecosystems - this is an important project. It sounds a bit grim, but knowing where and when trees have died will help to work out what the cause is, identify trees that are vulnerable, and take steps to protect them. https://bmedlyn.wordpress.com/join-us/

Posted on September 13, 2021 11:01 AM by barv barv | 0 comments | Leave a comment

Australian Citizen Science Association's annual conference (online) 27-29 October

CitSciOz21: Celebrate, Communicate, and Co-Create, our virtual experience will ensure a highly interactive and engaging event with an exciting line up of keynote speakers: Dr Karl Kruszelnicki AM, Corey Tutt CEO-Founder Deadly Science, Costa Georgiadis, Dr Cathy Foley Australia’s Chief Scientist and many other sessions. Check it out: https://citizenscience.org.au/citscioz21/

Posted on September 13, 2021 11:12 AM by barv barv | 0 comments | Leave a comment

September 21, 2021

Looking for the rare Brushtailed Phascogale on South Coast

Have you ever seen one of the rarest animals on NSW South Coast - a Brushtailed Phascogale (phas-co-gale)?
Susan Rhind, a wildlife biologist, has worked with this species for years and thought the pretty marsupial with its bottle-brush tail was extinct (or near enough) on NSW South Coast. When reviewing records for the revised edition of ‘The Mammals of Australia’ published by the Australian Museum, she came across a sighting at Broulee. Now she needs our help to find where phascogales may still be and where they may have been in the recent past. Brushtailed phascogales are rare – listed as a threatened species in every state and territory of Australia. In total there are only 21 records for southern NSW – about 3 records per decade. The one at Broulee was spotted at night foraging in a compost heap at Carroll College (2015). Before that sightings were at Longbeach (2007), at Duesbury Hill at Dalmeny (2001) and Dunn’s Creek Rd, near Malua Bay (1997).
Rarely seen, this species is arboreal and doesn’t like coming to the ground. It is nocturnal and solitary, and in the trees can be so lightning fast that it vanishes before you get a good look. It is completely dependent on large, old trees for hollows to nest in during the day and for its food of bark insects. Habitat destruction, logging, clearing for development – and drought and bushfires – are all a concern, as well as cats.
Around the size and colour of a sugar glider (approx 30cm head to tail), they look squirrel-like because of their brushy black tail. When excited all those hairs stand on end and the tail looks like a bottle brush. That is the most distinguishing feature. Maybe one has moved into your ceiling (this is quite common) or the cat has brought one home? They love nest-boxes so if you have any on your property the “best” time for watching is at dusk during the mating season (May-June) when males run around like crazy, and again Nov-Jan when the young are dispersing.
If you have seen a phascogale now or in the recent past please contact Susan Rhind: PhascogaleFSC@gmail.com

Posted on September 21, 2021 07:27 AM by barv barv | 0 comments | Leave a comment

September 22, 2021

Too hot to handle? Threatened flora recovery tales from South-East NSW

Listen to replay here https://vimeo.com/610589798
Studies on recovery of particular flora post bushfires.
Presented 21 September 2021 Department of Planning Industry and Environment

Posted on September 22, 2021 04:00 AM by barv barv | 0 comments | Leave a comment

September 24, 2021

Gang-gang behaviours associated with nesting stages

Detailed information from Prof Michael Mulvaney

CHECKING OUT AND SELECTING A NESTING SITE (September-early October)
Gang-gangs peer into hollows all year round and will enter hollows to access pooled water. It appears that a Gang-gang pair will have multiple hollows of interest and that in the Canberra area they are most active around hollows they are examining as potential nest sites in mid to late September. Hollow selection appears to take some time and may relate to weather conditions and presence of predators, such as possums In the four years of study, three years have been hot and dry and all selected hollows found were in the main trunk or a primary branch of a live tree. Last year was wet and cool in comparison and for the first time we found nesting hollows in dead/near dead trees and in smaller spouts.

During this stage Gang-gangs are easy to see anytime during the day, are sometimes quite noisy and need to fight off other bird species and compete with possums for the hollows; these encounters can be very noisy. Some other birds, which seem to challenge for the hollows are sulphur-crested cockatoos, rainbow lorikeets and galahs.

Behaviours/signs to look out for
• Both partners of a pair entering a hollow (usually not at the same time).
• Multiple visits by a pair to the same hollow over multiple days (visits may be less than a minute).
• Chewing of bark around or near a hollow. (Gangs-gangs lay their eggs on about 2-3 cm of chewed bark. Gang-gangs do not line their nest with leaves.)
• Multiple pairs in the same vicinity (within a few hundred metres) – Gang-gangs tend to nest close to each other.
• Wood duck feathers around hollow entrance. Wood ducks are early season nesters. Gang-gangs and wood ducks can use the same hollow in the same year.
• Gang-gang pair driving other birds away from a hollow.
• If Gang-gangs are calling loudly or “growling” down a hollow, with raised wings, it means that the hollow is probably occupied by a threatening animal such as a brushtail possum or boobook owl.

INCUBATION (October–early November)
The female spends the night on eggs, while during the day the male and female share incubation responsibilities. Thus there is always one bird in the nest. Incubation takes about 4 weeks. There is very little activity at all around the hollow and this may involve as little as two nesting sitting change-overs in a day. Change-overs can be quick and easily missed. The non-nesting bird spends very little time around the nest site. In Canberra most incubation begins mid-October but it can occur well into November. At least one pair has also switched hollows early in the season and begun again at a new site. This may have been in response to possum visitation.

Behaviours/signs to look out for
• Male or female seen sitting inside and on the edge of the hollow, looking out.
• Change-over. The incoming Gang-gang gives a very small call on the way in which gives the one on the egg(s) time to be prepared. It then comes in and changeover occurs. During this period the Gang-gangs are very quite, changeover happens in a matter of minutes. Best time to observe an incubation changeover is within the hour after dawn when the female leaves or in the evening when the females takes on night duties. Change-overs can occur at any time of the day.
• There is little Gang-gang activity around hollow.

HATCHED CHICKS
The female continues to spend the night on the nest. Both partners feed chicks during the day, but initially only a few feeding visits are made each day. Young leave the nest about eight weeks after hatching.

Behaviours/signs to look out for
• Female leaving or entering hollow at times other than early morning or late evening.
• The Gang-gangs appear to be happy to be away from eggs/young chicks for longer periods at changeover and the frequency of changeover increases, to at least a few times a day.
• Chicks chirping from inside hollow can sometimes be heard and you may also hear them being fed.
• Both partners visiting hollow during the day and may leave hollow together. Other Gang-gang couples may accompany a returning adult and be present during change-over. These birds may help “guard” the hollow when both adults are away. A Gang-gang pair or individual looking into a hollow may not be the parent but they will not be seen entering the hollow.
• Adult birds driving other birds away from hollow. Note adult birds from other nearby nests will drive other species like lorikeets and sulphur-crested cockatoos away from a neighbour's nest.
• Birds calling to and joining other nearby nesting Gang-gangs on foraging flights
• As the chicks grow, both parents are required for feeding with frequent feeding happening every hour or two.

FLEDGING
The average depth of a Gang-gang hollow in Canberra is about 50cm. When birds are getting near fledgling, parents encourage the chicks to climb to the hollow entrance by feeding them there. Chicks will stay perched at the hollow entrance and are visible over a 3-11 day period, just prior to fledging. The average is 7 days per chick. Longer visibility times usually involve multiple chicks. Thus the window in which a nest hollow can be confirmed purely by observation is short. In Canberra most chicks are first observed between Christmas and 15 January but has occurred from 8 December to 26 February. Time from laying to fledging varies from 61 to 79 days.

Behaviours/signs to look out for
• Chicks chirping from inside hollow can sometimes be heard.
• Parents perched on hollow with head in hollow, body or at least head rocking rapidly.
• Heads of chicks appearing above hollow entrance. Gang-gangs usually have between 1-3 chicks per nest with two being the most common. Chicks can develop at different rates so not all may be visible at one time. Thus determining the number and gender of chicks at a nest hollow should include multiple visits – preferably two a day once chicks are visible.
• In Canberra during the days of record temperatures and smoky air of the 2019/2020 season, we had chicks leaving the nest prematurely and falling helplessly to the ground. Where these chicks (two occasions) were replaced back into a hollow (by a volunteer climber) they were cared for by parents and successfully fledged. On the one occasion where a chick couldn’t be replaced it was predated.
• If a chick falls to the ground the adults will continue to feed it so do not disturb unless there is the possibility of predation. If a climber is available then placing it back in the hollow is best.
• Both Gang-gangs are present at fledging, seemingly encouraging the young to leave the hollow through calling, being close by, making repeated short flights from the hollow and if the young followed rewarding them with food. This process can take a number of days.
• The fledged chick will fly to a nearby tree, where both parents will then preen and feed the chick.
• Chicks do not return to a hollow once fledged.
• The newly fledged chicks in the area tend to form creches for a while and a large number of chicks can be seen together at times.

Posted on September 24, 2021 07:39 AM by barv barv | 0 comments | Leave a comment

Saving the Kangaloon Sun Orchid

https://vimeo.com/showcase/6802954
Presented 22 September 2021 Department of Planning Industry and Environment

Posted on September 24, 2021 07:57 AM by barv barv | 0 comments | Leave a comment

September 27, 2021

Budawang Coast website coming soon

Budawang Coast is working on a website. Here you will find news on events, interesting articles and publications, links to other sites and a whole lot more. The site will include a gallery of nature photos and this is where you come in. We are seeking good quality photos of flora, fauna, landscapes and citizen scientists doing their thing. So if you would like to see your images displayed for all to see on the world wide web, please email them to budawangcoast@gmail.com. Preferably include your name (signature) at the bottom of the image or send your name with the image so you can be credited. Thank you!

Posted on September 27, 2021 12:01 AM by annielane annielane | 0 comments | Leave a comment