You can help conserve our threatened species by tagging images taken by scientists in the field!
To monitor difficult to find threatened species across NSW’s vast environment, scientists from the Saving our Species (SoS) program use motion-triggered cameras to capture the presence, number and activity of these threatened species. Once the cameras detect movement they take a burst of images, which are then downloaded and tagged to identify the animal that has triggered the camera. Scientists can then use this data to monitor their threatened species, fill knowledge gaps, and inform on-ground conservation programs.
However, there is a problem. The cameras take many more photos than can be processed by scientists alone – this is where you can help!
Scientists are uploading images onto DigiVol, an online platform developed by the Australian Museum and the Atlas of Living Australia. You can now go to DigiVol to begin identifying what animals have been captured within these images. All you need to participate is access to a computer and an internet connection; the citizen science team have created user-friendly guides to help you navigate the system and learn how to identify the animals.
By tagging the animals in the images as a citizen scientist you are directly contributing data to scientists that are responsible for conserving our threatened species.
The Saving our Species Koala Drinkers project was set up to find out whether koalas and other native animals would use supplementary drinking water during our harsh dry summers. The koala drinkers were deployed across 20 private properties around Gunnedah on sites with evidence of koala activity in partnership with the Gunnedah Urban Landcare Group. Each station was equipped with a motion-sensing camera to record activity from dusk to dawn.
With your help, we will identify the number of koalas and other species accessing the drinkers, to better understand ways of helping koalas survive harsh weather. The data from these images is valuable to scientists, land managers and community members as we will be able to better understand how often these drinkers are being used and if they affect animal behaviour. The results from this project will better inform future projects that support animals during hot and dry conditions.
To help on this project:
The Saving our Species Malleefowl project uses a number of camera traps to monitor threats to malleefowl at their nesting locations (known as ‘mounds’). Malleefowl on DigiVol contains ‘Threat Detector’ expeditions aiming to understand threats to malleefowl by a range of animals that visit their nests.
Information in the images, processed by you as citizen scientist, will assist in identifying patterns of visitation by foxes, cats, goannas and all the other animals the visit. The data is very valuable to scientists and land managers as it will be analysed to determine if visiting animals are having a real impact on malleefowl activity during their nesting season. Results will inform conservation management. Malleefowl can also be really fascinating to watch!
To help on this project: