Margot Law, NPA Citizen Science Officer
Imagine a city where native animals flourish, helping to control feral vermin and even looking after your garden! Well, perhaps Sydney isn’t that far away from making this a reality. In recent years, we’ve seen native species like long-nosed bandicoots (Perameles nasuta), powerful owls (Ninox strenua) and native pollinators starting to reclaim their city.
Margot Law, Citizen Science Officer National Parks Association of NSW
NPA’s “Who’s living on my land?” is an innovative citizen science project that helps regional private landholders discover what species are on their property. We have trained more than 500 landholders, at 32 regional workshops over the last three and a half years, to survey their land for wildlife with infrared cameras, which we loan out to participants.
Fran van den Berg and Margot Law, NPA citizen science officers
We have been having an un-BEE-lieveable time with 60 students from Harrington Park Public School! As part of our new project, Bringing Back the Buzz to the Cumberland Plain Woodland, we piloted new lessons to inspire the next generation of conservationists to consider the role of native flowers and their pollinators in the ecosystem.
On the morning of Tuesday 21st March, local residents of northern Sydney will head to the Field of Mars Reserve, East Ryde, to see if they can find local water dragons and help with water quality testing and bush regeneration.
The Dragons of Sydney project is an initiative run by the National Parks Association of NSW (NPA) in partnership with Macquarie University to conserve Sydney’s urban Water Dragons through revegetation and citizen science.
Contributed by: James Baxter-Gilbert (PhD Student from Macquarie University, NSW)
The Australian Water dragon (Intellagama lesueurii) is a large lizard species common along the eastern coast of Australian ranging from Queensland to Victoria. There are two subspecies described: the Eastern Water Dragon (Intellagama lesueurii lesueurii) living in the northern extent of the range, and the Gippsland Water Dragon (Intellagama lesueurii howittii) living in the south1. The males of this species are larger in size and will defend a territory, displaying a bright red chest coupled with head-bobbing and arm-waving to communicate to other males to stay away. Females will regularly mate with multiple males to ensure genetic diversity of her eggs; a single clutch of eggs may have 2-3 different fathers2 divided between 6-18 eggs.
An ambitious citizen science survey has reconfirmed previous research demonstrating the importance of urban natural habitat in supporting bird diversity in suburban areas.
Over a thousand people from across Australia participated in the summer Bathing Birds survey developed by the National Parks Association of NSW, in partnership with Birds in Backyards and the University of Sydney.