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AusPlots
Designing a surveillance monitoring
network for Australia.
Ben Sparrow – Ausplots Director
With help from the Aus...
After Eyre et. al. 2011
Monitoring
There is ongoing tension between different types of monitoring regarding
their relative merits.
Often a monitor...
Which is better?
They all have their Place!
All are needed and provide useful contributions to our
knowledge of Australian...
NOT
Because we want to know if there is a problem, but
we don’t have the resources to have the fire
department everywhere ...
Primarily funded to support / develop ecological research
infrastructure
– integrate existing data and make it accessible ...
Objectives of AusPlots
National network of surveillance and ecosystem baseline assessment sites
Developing standardised pl...
About Our Method
• Practicality/pragmatism has had to prevail
• “It’s not about developing the perfect method, but rather
...
S1
NEN5N4N3N2N1NW
W5
W4
W3
W2
W1
SW S2 S3 S4 S5 SE
E1
E2
E3
E4
E5
What do we collect?
Voucher Specimens
for official Identification and future use.
Vouchers for genetic and isotope analysis
1. Take around 10 cm2 from
each voucher specimen
2. Place into a synthetic
tea b...
Point Intercept Data
Basal Wedge
Three most
dominant species
nominated in each
strata, in decreasing
order of cover
Structural
Information
During
After
Leaf Area Index
Soil Metagenomic Samples
9 Samples across the
site
Top 3cm of soil and
crust
Dried and stored
Soil Pit
9 x 30cm
Subsites to
sample
variability
Store samples in
bags and
prepare for NSA
on return from
the field
Bulk density
• 3 depths at pit.
• To calibrate
other measures
to soil volume
2.5m
1.45m
The tripod is set up at
each apex of the triangle
and a full set of photos
taken for 360 degrees at
each point....
Ellude to what analysis avalible
Full method details available at:
http://www.ausplots.org/useourinfrastructure/
Under the heading of Accepted Method.
AusPlots
Where
Stage 1. Determining
Bioregional groupings using
hierarchical clustering
techniques
Stage 2. Decisions on which
bioregions...
Prentice/Dong u diag
Relates to a series of Temperature variables
RelatestoaseriesofMoisturevariables
Addresses
knowledge gaps
Located where
there is a NEED for
data
Other protocols:
Since the creation of the Rangelands protocols, and
their widespread acceptance we’ve added:
A Tall Eucal...
How is it achieved?
Extensive Networking / Collaboration / input to the process
Engage with Agricultural, Environmental, F...
Collaboration with:
Consistent and accurate data
collection
A Nationally accepted method
Details all aspects of method
Easy to use and well il...
5
Advanced data systems:
Field App - what is it?
✤ It’s an (Android) mobile application that
electronically collects field...
Field App: Plot Creation
38
Field App: Site Description
39
Field App: Veg. Vouchering
40
Field App: Point Intercept
41
Data Delivery System
Field Collection
Curation
Database
Storage
Retrieval
Data Delivery: Soils to Satellites
http://soils2sat.ala.org.au/ala-soils2sat/login/auth
Data Delivery: Aekos
http://www.aekos.org.au/
Field team
• Based in Adelaide
• Provides consistency
• Best way to use
scarce resources –
Would prefer to have
state base...
Training
courses
• At least one per
year
• A day of lectures
explaining all
aspects of the
method
• A day learning
each co...
…and many publications
2015
Christmas M., Breed M., and Lowe A.J. (In review) Constraints and conservation implications fo...
• Presentations
to community
groups.
• Workshops
• Targeted
presentations
(state agencies,
fed Govt.)
• Briefing
ministeri...
Outputs influence management and policy
Still early days for the project given that re-visits are
only just starting (alon...
FAO - Global Drylands Assessment
Discovered significant amounts of forest occurring in drylands that was previously
unknow...
FAO - Global Forest Survey
Ausplots a member of the foundation committee and providing advice on:
• Standardised method
• ...
Fire
Plots can be used to validate fire analysis from remote sensing sources
Also track the response of particular communi...
Calculating carbon
Information from
• Point intercept (cover, height,
species, lifeform)
• Basal Wedge (Basal Area)
• Phot...
Monitoring and Evaluation
Methods meet D of E information requirements – They supported
the creation of the new modules
Al...
Monitoring Pastoral leases – Directly + RS
Used in the NT and Nationally to inform / validate fractional
cover products
Th...
Capacity Building
Cert 1 – Kakadu
Cert 3 – MJ Rangers
Other groups join for
One off surveys.
Uni / TAFE Guest Lectures
Gen...
Photopoints close to web release:
Collect own photos using the protocols
Zip in a specified format
Submit to the website
E...
Tooling – need the right tool for the right job
We can provide tools to ease
data collection
New modules including citizen...
How to get samples
At Present have collected approximately:
>10,000 Soil samples
~2700 Soil metagenomic Samples
>15000 Vou...
A 10 year program has been confirmed from 2017/18 – Money
indexed and identified in the forward estimates.
Aim to complete...
What can AusPlots offer you?
www.ausplots.org.au
For details including Volunteering, HDR, Data, methods,
Samples, Training...
Perth ausplots presentation_070616_internet_qu
Perth ausplots presentation_070616_internet_qu
Perth ausplots presentation_070616_internet_qu
Perth ausplots presentation_070616_internet_qu
Perth ausplots presentation_070616_internet_qu
Perth ausplots presentation_070616_internet_qu
Perth ausplots presentation_070616_internet_qu
Perth ausplots presentation_070616_internet_qu
Perth ausplots presentation_070616_internet_qu
Perth ausplots presentation_070616_internet_qu
Perth ausplots presentation_070616_internet_qu
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Perth ausplots presentation_070616_internet_qu

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A presentation on the AusPlots program detailing it's aims and objectives, what and how data is collected, how it is delivered along with information on collaborations, data use, analysis and future opportunities

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Perth ausplots presentation_070616_internet_qu

  1. 1. AusPlots Designing a surveillance monitoring network for Australia. Ben Sparrow – Ausplots Director With help from the Ausplots Team ben.sparrow@adelaide.edu.au
  2. 2. After Eyre et. al. 2011
  3. 3. Monitoring There is ongoing tension between different types of monitoring regarding their relative merits. Often a monitoring program is judged on what would define a successful monitoring program for a different type of monitoring. Each type of monitoring needs to be judged against its aims and objectives.
  4. 4. Which is better? They all have their Place! All are needed and provide useful contributions to our knowledge of Australian environments. Each of these endeavours need to cooperate/ collaborate with the others to provide a holistic solution to monitoring. The most important parts are actually the arrows!
  5. 5. NOT Because we want to know if there is a problem, but we don’t have the resources to have the fire department everywhere all the time!
  6. 6. Primarily funded to support / develop ecological research infrastructure – integrate existing data and make it accessible to the national and global ecosystem sciences community in a common format; and – collect new data strategically in areas of high priority to allow subsequent analysis and modeling of the assimilated data. In the context of AusPlots the Plots and their associated data are considered to be infrastructure. TERN
  7. 7. Objectives of AusPlots National network of surveillance and ecosystem baseline assessment sites Developing standardised plot assessment methods to be used for measuring and sampling vegetation and soils, and Developing and implementing a stratification process to decide the locations of plots, which is applicable at a continental scale, and Establish permanent plot infrastructure throughout Australia where baseline surveys of vegetation and soils will be conducted by Implementing the plot assessment methods developed for measuring and sampling vegetation and soils - in the locations decided, and - analysing the samples collected, and Storing the data and making it freely available To enable the detection (and trajectory and magnitude) of environmental change across the continent to be determined.
  8. 8. About Our Method • Practicality/pragmatism has had to prevail • “It’s not about developing the perfect method, but rather understanding how imperfect the method is.” Modular Methods • The method has been designed in modules • Ease of use in the field • For your own purposes (not AusPlots funded) there is the possibility of only including some modules • For AusPlots and training purposes we will cover all modules
  9. 9. S1 NEN5N4N3N2N1NW W5 W4 W3 W2 W1 SW S2 S3 S4 S5 SE E1 E2 E3 E4 E5 What do we collect?
  10. 10. Voucher Specimens for official Identification and future use.
  11. 11. Vouchers for genetic and isotope analysis 1. Take around 10 cm2 from each voucher specimen 2. Place into a synthetic tea bag and seal 3. Label with adhesive voucher label and scan with app 4. Place bag in box with ⅓ cup silica granules (self indicating and non-indicating granules) 5. Seal box and ensure it is labelled with plot identifier. Preferably 1 box per plot. Change silica every few days until indicator no longer changes colour. 6. Samples can then be used for isotope and DNA analyses + Duplicates for Dominant species
  12. 12. Point Intercept Data
  13. 13. Basal Wedge
  14. 14. Three most dominant species nominated in each strata, in decreasing order of cover Structural Information
  15. 15. During After Leaf Area Index
  16. 16. Soil Metagenomic Samples 9 Samples across the site Top 3cm of soil and crust Dried and stored
  17. 17. Soil Pit
  18. 18. 9 x 30cm Subsites to sample variability Store samples in bags and prepare for NSA on return from the field
  19. 19. Bulk density • 3 depths at pit. • To calibrate other measures to soil volume
  20. 20. 2.5m 1.45m The tripod is set up at each apex of the triangle and a full set of photos taken for 360 degrees at each point. The centre point is a star dropper standing 1.3m tall (if at all possible) with a mark ( the top of the mark) set 25cm from the top of the pole. Photopoints
  21. 21. Ellude to what analysis avalible
  22. 22. Full method details available at: http://www.ausplots.org/useourinfrastructure/ Under the heading of Accepted Method.
  23. 23. AusPlots Where
  24. 24. Stage 1. Determining Bioregional groupings using hierarchical clustering techniques Stage 2. Decisions on which bioregions to sample Stage 3. GIS analysis within each bioregion Stage 4. Field Location whilst on ground. Where? - Stratification
  25. 25. Prentice/Dong u diag Relates to a series of Temperature variables RelatestoaseriesofMoisturevariables
  26. 26. Addresses knowledge gaps Located where there is a NEED for data
  27. 27. Other protocols: Since the creation of the Rangelands protocols, and their widespread acceptance we’ve added: A Tall Eucalypt Forest protocol A Condition assessment protocol A Woodlands Protocol A Vertebrate Fauna Survey Protocol, With ongoing work on: A Fungi Protocol A Ground Dwelling Invertebrates A Core attributes (quicker) method Identifying and articulating what re-visits entail.
  28. 28. How is it achieved? Extensive Networking / Collaboration / input to the process Engage with Agricultural, Environmental, Forestry communities as well as NGO’s – Input from all Rangeland States and Territories The challenges of this kind of project are greater socially than they are scientifically! SA SA National NationalNational Collaborator TAS QLD NSW NSW NSWNT WA WA NSW National TERN TERN TERN TERN QLD
  29. 29. Collaboration with:
  30. 30. Consistent and accurate data collection A Nationally accepted method Details all aspects of method Easy to use and well illustrated Explains reasoning Regularly updated Available at: http://www.ausplots.org/ useourinfrastructure/ Designed to be used with our training course New modules being added – Check back regularly.
  31. 31. 5 Advanced data systems: Field App - what is it? ✤ It’s an (Android) mobile application that electronically collects field data according to the AusPlots data collection specification. • Ensures data consistency • Easy data upload • Removes transcription errors • Uses dropdowns • Has checks and balances built in • Robust vouchering protocol for unknown species • Ensures all necessary data is collected • Captures location • Ease of use
  32. 32. Field App: Plot Creation 38
  33. 33. Field App: Site Description 39
  34. 34. Field App: Veg. Vouchering 40
  35. 35. Field App: Point Intercept 41
  36. 36. Data Delivery System Field Collection Curation Database Storage Retrieval
  37. 37. Data Delivery: Soils to Satellites http://soils2sat.ala.org.au/ala-soils2sat/login/auth
  38. 38. Data Delivery: Aekos http://www.aekos.org.au/
  39. 39. Field team • Based in Adelaide • Provides consistency • Best way to use scarce resources – Would prefer to have state based teams in the future if funding allowed. • Well equipped • Can train others • Work in conjunction with state agencies where possible. • Work well together in trying conditions.
  40. 40. Training courses • At least one per year • A day of lectures explaining all aspects of the method • A day learning each component of our method (Vegetation, Soils and Technical Aspects) • Focuses on theoretical and practical aspects • Pragmatic • Held in the Rangelands • Ideally others will collect the data – Want others to adopt sites.
  41. 41. …and many publications 2015 Christmas M., Breed M., and Lowe A.J. (In review) Constraints and conservation implications for climate change adaptation in plants. Biological Conservation Guerin G.R., Sweeney S.M., Pisanu P., Caddy-Retalic S., and Lowe A.J. (In review) Establishment of an ecosystem transect to address climate change policy questions for natural resource management. Environmental Management Guerin G.R. and Lowe A.J. (In review) Mapping phylogenetic endemism using georeferenced branch extents. Methods in Ecology and Evolution Guerin G.R., Ruokolainen L. and Lowe A.J. (In press) A georeferenced implementation of weighted endemism. Methods in Ecology and Evolution 2014 Bowman D.M.J.S., Williamson G.J., Keenan R.J. and Prior L.D. (2014) A warmer world will reduce tree growth in evergreen broadleaf forests: Evidence from Australian temperate and subtropical eucalypt forests. Global Ecology and Biogeography, 23(8): 925-934. (DOI: 10.1111/geb.12171) Breed M.F., Christmas M.J. and Lowe A.J. (2014) Higher levels of multiple paternities increase seedling survival in the long-lived tree Eucalyptus gracilis.PLOS ONE, 9(2) e90478 (DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0090478) Guerin G.R., Martín-Forés I., Biffin E., Baruch Z., Breed M.F., Christmas M.J., Cross H.B. and Lowe A.J. (2014) Global change community ecology beyond species sorting: a quantitative framework based on Mediterranean Biome examples. Global Ecology and Biogeography, 23: 1062– 1072.http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/geb.12184 Guerin G.R., Biffin E., Jardine D.I., Cross H.B. and Lowe A.J. (2014) A spatially predictive baseline for monitoring multivariate species occurrences and phylogenetic shifts in Mediterranean southern Australia. Journal of Vegetation Science, 25: 338–348. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jvs.12111 McCallum K., Guerin G.R., Breed M.F. and Lowe A.J. (2014) Combining population genetics, species distribution modelling and field assessments to understand a species vulnerability to climate change. Austral Ecology, 39: 17–28. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/aec.12041 Prior L.D. and Bowman D.M.J.S. (2014) Across a macro-ecological gradient forest competition is strongest at the most productive sites. Frontiers in Plant Science, 5: 260. (DOI: 10.3389/fpls.2014.00260) Prior L.D. and Bowman D.M.J.S. (2014) Big eucalypts grow more slowly in a warm climate: evidence of an interaction between tree size and temperature. Global Change Biology, 20(9): 2793-2799. (DOI: 10.1111/gcb.12540) Schut A.G.T., Wardell-Johnson G.W., Yates C.J., Keppel G., Baran I., Franklin S.E., Hopper S.D., Van Neil K., Mucina L. and Byrne M. (2014) Rapid characterisation of vegetation structure to predict refugia and climate change impacts across a global biodiversity hotspot. PLOS ONE, 9: e82778. (DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0082778) Tapper S-L., Byrne M., Yates C.J., Keppel G., Hopper S.D., Van Niel K., Schut A.G.T., Mucina L. and Wardell-Johnson G.W. (2014) Isolated with persistence or dynamically connected? Genetic patterns in a common granite outcrop endemic. Diversity and Distributions, 20(9): 987-1001 (DOI: 10.1111/ddi.12185) Tapper S-L., Byrne M., Yates C.J., Keppel G., Hopper S.D., Van Niel K., Schut A.G.T., Mucina L. and Wardell-Johnson G.W. (2014) Long-term isolation and persistence of Stypandra glauca R.Br. (Hemerocallidaceae) on granite outcrops in both mesic and arid environments in southwestern Australia. Journal of Biogeography, 41: 2032-2044. (DOI: 10.1111/jbi.12343)
  42. 42. • Presentations to community groups. • Workshops • Targeted presentations (state agencies, fed Govt.) • Briefing ministerial advisors • Well maintained website • Conference presentations • International reference groups / tours • Regular TERN Newsletter articles to large mailing list.
  43. 43. Outputs influence management and policy Still early days for the project given that re-visits are only just starting (along with further roll out) Assessment of soil metagenomics Vegetation community distribution related to soil P Taxonomy – New species and range extensions Modelling of climate change scenarios Government are supporting surveillance monitoring as an essential input to future state of environment reporting. Inform on soil crust ( and hence erosion) ++++
  44. 44. FAO - Global Drylands Assessment Discovered significant amounts of forest occurring in drylands that was previously unknown – Ausplots Accuracy Assessment.
  45. 45. FAO - Global Forest Survey Ausplots a member of the foundation committee and providing advice on: • Standardised method • Modular design of methods • Data collection via App • Data Management systems
  46. 46. Fire Plots can be used to validate fire analysis from remote sensing sources Also track the response of particular communities post fire. + Fire history notes taken at the site.
  47. 47. Calculating carbon Information from • Point intercept (cover, height, species, lifeform) • Basal Wedge (Basal Area) • Photopoints (Basal Area) Can all be used as inputs to allometric equations to quantify the amount of carbon at the site. Changes in these figures over time will provide insight to carbon sequestration. Soil Samples, and Bulk density information is also available to calculate soil carbon and change
  48. 48. Monitoring and Evaluation Methods meet D of E information requirements – They supported the creation of the new modules Allows accurately assessment of change and so easy to monitor the effect of a management intervention Often the “missed” bit of any project. Ausplots addresses one the major outcomes of Australia’s Biodiversity Conservation Strategy 2010-2030 – to “Implement robust national monitoring, reporting and evaluation.”
  49. 49. Monitoring Pastoral leases – Directly + RS Used in the NT and Nationally to inform / validate fractional cover products The national validation has a direct link into our database and analyses and transforms our data into a suitable format on the fly. Assists assessing land cover change on pastoral lands. Data collection method designed to be entirely compatible with fractional cover assessment. Collect “in-canopy Sky” class and “Branch” category Translation script written in conjunction with Auscover.
  50. 50. Capacity Building Cert 1 – Kakadu Cert 3 – MJ Rangers Other groups join for One off surveys. Uni / TAFE Guest Lectures Genuine interest in a career in this kind of work. TO involvement in surveys if possible – the future 10 year plan will make this more achievable. Modular format so some modules can be adopted by ranger groups. We aim to teach others how to monitor these plots through time, with our help only when necessary.
  51. 51. Photopoints close to web release: Collect own photos using the protocols Zip in a specified format Submit to the website E-mailed with the results.
  52. 52. Tooling – need the right tool for the right job We can provide tools to ease data collection New modules including citizen science if possible Ease of data management Collection – publication in 3 days Easy to manage data Web interface to DB for management Make data easily available online
  53. 53. How to get samples At Present have collected approximately: >10,000 Soil samples ~2700 Soil metagenomic Samples >15000 Voucher specimens ~ 15000 Genetic Samples ~ 16000 Dominant Genetic replicates All of which can be access following standard protocols Information pack available for download at our website Details how to get access.
  54. 54. A 10 year program has been confirmed from 2017/18 – Money indexed and identified in the forward estimates. Aim to complete the roll out and commence revisits (some sites several.) With a long term project we’re looking for long term partners / collaborators to work with. Clearly demonstrate the value/need for long term surveillance monitoring data across the continent.
  55. 55. What can AusPlots offer you? www.ausplots.org.au For details including Volunteering, HDR, Data, methods, Samples, Training, App etc. Ben.sparrow@adelaide.edu.au 08 8313 1201

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