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Ausplots Training - Session 2


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Ausplots Training - Session 2

  1. 1. AusPlotsTrainingSession 2 Brought to you by Team AusPlots
  2. 2. 4 Presentations before lunch Stratification –“Telling an Australian Story” Use of the data: Collaborators, Downstream analysis and Knowledge Gained Introduction to the AusPlots Method Manual Organising a Survey, Equipment, Permissions etc.
  3. 3. StratificationTelling an Australian Ecological StoryBen Sparrow
  4. 4. Stratification“Telling the Australian Story”
  5. 5. Decision Framework
  6. 6. Decision Framework
  7. 7. Rangelands Forests
  8. 8. •Climate •Vegetation mapping •Landform •Bioregions •Good national spatial coverage •Data deficient areas •Location of other TERN sites / Environments covered/ Collaboration •Ibrasub regions •Distance from water •Land systems •Regional Ecosystems •Land Units Pragmatic decision making on: Historical Information Scientific/ Environmental Information Logistical Information Political Information
  9. 9. Pragmatic decision making on: Previous monitoring sites •Types of information previously collected •Location of site •Ability to accurately relocate •Management history •Quality/ compatabilityof previously collected data. •Location of biological survey sites •Land Use •Aim of previous monitoring Historical Information Scientific/ Environmental Information Logistical Information Political Information
  10. 10. Pragmatic decision making on: •Ability to get to the site •Financial limitations •Ease of access to bioregion •Ease of access to suitable sites •Road and Track layers •Terrain layers Historical Information Scientific/ Environmental Information Logistical Information Political Information
  11. 11. Pragmatic decision making on: •State priorities •Site ownership •Tenure •Location within NRS •Covenants •Federal Government Priorities •Future Policy Drivers •Carbon economy •Climate change •Biodiversity loss •Food security Historical Information Scientific/ Environmental Information Logistical Information Political Information
  12. 12. Stratification/ Site Selection Consists of 4 steps –Bioregional Stratification –Selecting representative bioregions to sample –Stratification of areas of sampling interest within each bioregion –Field location of plots
  13. 13. Stage 1. Determining Bioregional groupings using hierarchical clustering techniques Based on: •Climate •Regolith/Landform •Major Vegetation Groups Summarise for each bioregion Conduct PATN analysis to group similar bioregions
  14. 14. Stage 2. Decisions on which bioregions to sample In consultation with state and territory agencies Based on the decision making framework Stratification workshop held in May 2011 –representatives from each state Pick one or several Bioregions per group to sample •Developed a consensus list a few months after the workshop Pragmatic decision making on: Historical Information Logistical Information Political Information Scientific/ Environmental Information
  15. 15. Stage 3. GIS analysis within each bioregion to determine Areas of Interest Based on the best available spatial information representing each information type in our decision framework. •e.g. Vegetation Mapping or Land Units •e.g. Distance from tracks •e.g. State monitoring priorities •e.g. Previous monitoring sites Pragmatic decision making on: Historical Information Logistical Information Political Information Scientific/ Environmental Information
  16. 16. •Gather best available spatial information for each bioregion that is sampled. •Conduct GIS analysis to determine which areas are of highest priority to sample. •Interpret these areas in light of heuristic information on previous monitoring sites, local knowledge (in collaboration with states), and practical and logistical considerations, and reservation •Output is areas of interest
  17. 17. Stage 4 -Field Locations of Plots •Final selection only possible in the field. •Will be some rules to provide guidance •Homogeneity •Orientated to grid •Decision process noted •Representative •Protected •Discussed in a subsequent Presentation
  18. 18. Are now also including a new process •Working with Kristen Williams and Simon Ferrier @ CSIRO Ecosystem Sciences •Assess where we currently have sites •Assess the location of these sites against biological and climatic variables •Calculate the “most dissimilar” sites to focus next effort on.
  19. 19. Uses of the DataCollaborations, downstream analysis and knowledge gainedBen Sparrow
  20. 20. Collaboration with: Bush Blitz and State Herbaria Analyses conducted: –Shared field data collection –Species discovery and frequency cover Knowledge gained –Biodiversity discovery –Improved understanding of flora distribution –Ability to model distribution –Increased understanding of habitat preferences/requirements –Specimen protection/preservation
  21. 21. Collaboration with: Bush Blitz and State NRM Agencies Analyses conducted: –Plant/Canopy Structure / Size –Community Demographics Knowledge gained –Age/ Demographic profiles –Data to inform on Ecosystem Condition –Community evolution –Understanding the drivers of change
  22. 22. Collaboration with: Australian Centre for Visual Technologies Analyses conducted: –Determined new method for taking photo points –Interactive Panoramas Developed –Point Clouds calculated –Research into Basal Area Calculations Knowledge gained –Growth form analysis automated –Basal area calculated –with allometricequations able to calibrate to biomass for particular communities and hence inform on carbon volume –Determine BHD –Inform on community structure –Info in the entire site
  23. 23. Collaboration with: Auscover, CSIRO and DERM (QLD) Analyses conducted: –Acquisition of terrestrial LiDARof selected ecosystems –Comparison with photopointdata –Calibrate photopointdata with known measurements –Estimate biomass for communities Knowledge gained –Will help inform on carbon –Assist train photopointsfor structural data –Improved ground based biomass measures/ Structural volumes –Compatibility/ Validation of Airborne LiDAR
  24. 24. Collaboration with: AusCover Analyses conducted: –LAI measurements in Situ –Compare and validate remotely sensed LAI products –Relationship between LAI and FPC determined Knowledge gained –Validation of international RS products –Validation in previously poorly sampled areas. –Understanding of the relationship between LAI and FPC on a community basis –LAI informative on net primary productivity –Understanding how productive a system will affect management
  25. 25. Collaboration with: Atlas of Living Australia and ÆKOS Analyses conducted: –Created Android “app” for digital data collection –Data automatically uploaded to AusPlots database –AusPlots database on “the cloud” –Query directly or serve through ÆKOS Benefits –Ease of data collection –Less opportunities for error –Save significant $$ on data entry –Ensures data collected in correct format –Speed up data collection
  26. 26. Collaboration with: TERN Soils, CSIRO Land and Water –National Soils Archive Analyses conducted: –Robustly store samples for future use –Wet chemistry –MIR analysis –Calibration of MIR Knowledge gained –Soil chemical inventory of rangeland –very few samples outside agricultural areas –Will inform the soils map of Australia –Provide continental soil carbon and nutrient info –Provide for future uses
  27. 27. Collaboration with: Bioplatformsaustralia Analyses conducted: –Metagenomicanalysis of dried soil •9 samples per plot •By all plots Knowledge gained –Biodiversity discovery –Metagenomicsoil community assessment across the continent –Informs diversity and function of soil biota –Soil biota distribution in relation to geology, climate, vegetation –Tests how well soil DNA can be used as rapid biodiversity survey
  28. 28. Collaboration with: e-Mast Analyses conducted: –Isotope Analysis (A) –Plant functional traits (M) –Wet/ Dry Mass –Leaf area (M) –Respiration info (S) Knowledge gained –Provides essential modeling inputs –Information not available to date –Inform on carbon –Better modeling + increased predictive/ what if scenarios
  29. 29. Collaboration with: JahrenLab –University of Hawai’i & David Keith UNSW & eMAST Analyses conducted: –Plant Isotope Analysis Knowledge gained –Info on plant stresses –Info in best adapted species –Info on species at risk –Compared to morphological and genetic indicators of stress –Inform models on how species effected by climate change –Species headed for extinction
  30. 30. Collaboration with: IBOL, CBOL, BGI Analyses conducted: –Barcodingof plant samples (curated) –Population genetic analysis of plant samples (all replicates) –Transcriptomeanalysis (targeted sites) Knowledge gained –Evolutionary relationships -species/communities –Phylogeneticdiversity and endemism –Community phylogeny and evolutionary adaptation –Ecosystem refugiaand genetic diversity –Colonisation/contraction dynamics –Connectivity and biogeographicdisjunction analysis –Adaptive gene identification and screening –Gene expression changes in response to environment
  31. 31. Collaboration with: Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry/ National Earth Observations Group –GeoscienceAustralia Analyses conducted: –Point Intercept –Conversion of Point Intercept data to functional groups –Data collection on the “app” –Data storage Knowledge gained –Validation of Land Cover datasets –Particularly Fractional Cover datasets –Inform NEO DLCM –Accuracy assessment
  32. 32. The AusPlotsMethods ManualAn Introduction Protocol-Manual-released-bgp1915.html
  33. 33. .
  34. 34. Including: a) Plot description. b) Soil characterisation to 1 m+ c) Soil observation d) Soil bulk density e) Soil samples
  35. 35. Future Updates •Significant content update/ refresh throughout •Addition of: –Fauna Survey Protocols –Birds Survey Protocols (from Birdlife Australia) –Woodlands Module –Condition Assessment Protocols –Ant and/or invertebrate survey Protocols –Fungi Survey Protocols •Inclusion of the Forest manual
  36. 36. Organising a Survey Sally
  37. 37. Funding and Expenses •Wages •Vehicles and fuel •Accommodation •Equipment costs –Stationary, printing, maps etc •Licence and access fees –Existing data, permits, etc •Food and living expenses •Petty cash –Unexpected repairs, consumables, other expenses •Consultant fees •Additional wages or survey-specific expenses
  38. 38. Legislative Requirements •Scientific Permits (State Govt) –Required for research that requires “taking” any protected species from the wild (inc. private land) –research carried out in reserves, including collection of soil, rocks, leaf litter, etc. National Park Regional Reserve Conservation Reserve Conservation Park Wilderness Protection Area Crown Lands Game Reserve Wilderness Protection Zone Forest Reserves Recreation Park Heritage Agreement Area Public Parks Aboriginal Heritage Sites, Aboriginal Lands, Fisheries, Registered Heritage Places EPBCAct: Actions which may have a significant impact uponWorld Heritage Areas, RamsarWetlands, Listed Species & Communities, or Migratory spp.
  39. 39. Legislative Requirements Animals •Licence for Teaching, Research or Experimentation involving animals –SAPrevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1985 –Application to Animal Welfare Unit, DEWNR (fee $) •Animal Ethics –Any activity involving “interaction with vertebrates (except fish) must be approved by an AEC. •State Govt agencies, universities, etc have dedicated or joint AECs, many are availability to external parties. •Licence to Possess and Administer Drugs for Euthanasia (S4 Licence)
  40. 40. Biosecurity •Chytridfungus, Phytopthora, Myrtle Rust •Crazy ants, Cryptosporidiosis, etc •Avoid or limit movement of specimens between sites •Follow local hygiene protocols - clean vehicles, boots, clothes and survey equipment •Contact local agencies to be aware of local risks
  41. 41. Cultural Considerations •Proclaimed Aboriginal Lands or areas owned by Indigenous communities require advanced planning and permission –sacred sites (gender and initiation considerations) –disturbance of significant landscape features –removal or disturbance of sacred plants and animals –entry permits –local communities may wish to be actively involved in survey activities (and may ask for payment) •Aboriginal Consultative Committees can advise best approach to take (and timeframes required)
  42. 42. Landholders and Local Community •Consult after funding and permits have been secured to plan specifics of survey •Explain aims and constraints, ask for views •Landholder may wish to be involved in survey •Publicise activities in local community, particularly with local rangers, Landcaregroups, etc •Consider notifying Police
  43. 43. Reconnaissance Trips •Check survey sites prior to survey beginning •Area may have changed significantly since selection •Fire, flood, agriculture or other disturbance may rendersite unsuitable •Logistical challenges best identified in advance (access, etc)
  44. 44. Confirmation with Landholders •Once sites and survey dates have been confirmed, all landholders and managers should be contacted to confirm arrangements •Identify any areas to be avoided •Ensure access (keys etc) •Check which radiofrequencies are usedlocally
  45. 45. Field Equipment and Vehicles •Ensure equipment and vehicles are suitable for conditions and provide adequate contingencyTerrain: 4WDs, radios –Remote: Satellite phone, radios, extra fuel and water etc –Weather: wet weather gear, extra water, mosquito protection, warm clothes, etc
  46. 46. Survey Specific Items •Local maps, including general area –Hospitals, nearest supermarket, etc •Data collection sheets (hole punched) •ID field guides •Specimen containers and labels •Photopointmarkers and discs
  47. 47. Survey Participants Adequate expertise and support Scientific expertise, drivers, hazardous goods handlers, etc Ensure there is someone familiar with the method Ensure roles are clearly identified Medical information Volunteers Should be reimbursed for out of pocket expenses Make it clear what costs they will need to cover
  48. 48. Pre-Survey Meeting •Ensures everyone is on the same page •Survey coordinators give overview of methodology, location of survey site, accommodation, etc •Collection of keys, local contacts, facilities, etc •Local issues –Biosecurity –Cultural considerations •Handouts –Include the above –contact information forall participants
  49. 49. Transport •Appropriate vehicles •Vehicle checklists and backup gear –Well ahead of time and prior to departure •Driver training –Manual cars, 4WD, towing, heavy vehicles, etc –Winch and radio operation •Meeting points
  50. 50. Packing •Ensure enough space for personal gear –let participants know beforehand what they will need and how much they can bring •Pack as much as possible ahead of time •Pack safely –tie down loose items –don’t carry liquid nitrogenor formalin inside passengercompartments
  51. 51. Scheduled Check-Ins •Establish regime prior to leaving •Check in at least daily (more often in summer or if conditions are adverse) •Base must launch rescue if three call-ins are missed (e.g. 9am, 4pm, 9am) and contact cannot be made •Backup form of contact –radios, mobile phones, satellite phones, locallandlines, etc
  52. 52. From the office you’ll always know where your staff are.....If they’re in possession of their spot device
  53. 53. Lunch