Hoot Detective featured on the ABC’s Off Track

Hoot Detective, the citizen science project developed by ABC Science, the A2O and the University of New England, has been featured on Off Track (14/08/2021). Off Track is presented by Ann Jones and Jo Khan, and is an amazing radio program on the ABC about the sounds of nature, ecology, and the researchers behind the science. Please check out the program here, featuring QUT’s very own Callan Alexander and Marina Scarpelli.

Hoot Detective: A2O, ABC and UNE collaborate for National Science Week 2021

The A2O, in partnership with ABC Science and the University of New England, have developed Hoot Detective for National Science Week 2021. Hoot Detective is a digital citizen science project where participants can identify owl species, as well as other audible organisms, from across Australia. Anna Salleh’s article Listening to the planet: Understanding the science of ecoacoustics provides more information about the project. To start finding owls and other critters that call in the night, follow the link to Hoot Detective now, and happy listening!

Exciting updates for the A2O

It’s been a long time between posts, and there have been many exciting developments for the Australian Acoustic Observatory over the intervening period. A large number of sites have been added to the A2O network, ranging from the far north to Tasmania, and the arid interior to coastal locations. Many recordings are now processed and are being made accessible through the A2O data portal.

A2O infrastructure is now hosted by the Queensland University of Technology (QUT) in Brisbane. The move to QUT has been an involved process, and we aim to minimise any further delays related to the new arrangement. Thank you to everyone for your patience, and please check in regularly with the observatory for future developments.

The observatory has also had a paper published in Methods in Ecology and Evolution. The paper can be accessed here. Please reference this paper if you plan to use A2O data in any publications or projects.

Thanks again for your support and enthusiasm for the Australian Acoustic Observatory! Keep an eye out for more news here and keep in touch with the A2O team if you have any comments or questions.

Acoustic data now available for Bowra Wildlife Sanctuary

Acoustic data from the Australian Wildlife Conservancy’s Bowra Sanctuary is now available! Sensors have been collecting information across Bowra for the past couple of months, recording many of the property’s arid bird species. Soundscapes range from dry Mulga plains (Bowra Dry A and Bowra Dry B) to the creeks and waterholes dotted throughout this unique landscape (Bowra Wet A and Bowra Wet B).

A2O acoustic sensors now recording across AWC’s Bowra Wildlife Sanctuary

Many thanks to the Australian Wildlife Conservancy (AWC) for participating in the A2O project! Acoustic sensors were deployed at Bowra in Spring 2019 following rainfall across the region. Wildflowers were blooming and Buderigars (Melopsittacus undulatus) breeding in large numbers. Bowra Wildlife Sanctuary is an important reserve located near Cunnamulla in south-western Queensland, supporting many arid and semi-arid bird species.

Searching for Powerful Owls and other night birds

We need your help to search for night fauna at QUT’s Samford Ecological Research Facility.

By finding as many vocalisations of Powerful Owls, Southern Boobooks and Bush-stone Curlews as you can, you will not only help give a better understanding of the presence of these wonderful animals at Samford, but you will also contribute valuable data that will help us build powerful tools to make the task of conducting acoustic ecological surveys easier.

Visit https://data.acousticobservatory.org/citsci/night-birds/ to get started!

Acoustic data now available for the Samford Ecological Research Facility (SERF)

Acoustic data may now be accessed for the Samford Ecological Research Facility (SERF). SERF is managed by the Queensland University of Technology, and affiliated with the Terrestrial Ecosystem Research Network (TERN). These are the first available recordings for the A2O, with acoustic sensors actively monitoring the soundscapes of eucalypt woodland (SERF Dry A and SERF Dry B) and notophyll vine forest (SERF Wet A and SERF Wet B) on the outskirts of Brisbane in South-East Queensland.

The Australian Acoustic Observatory in Yale Environment 360

‘Listening to Nature: The Emerging Field of Bioacoustics’ is a recent story written by Adam Welz for Yale Environment 360 exploring the growing use of acoustic technologies in ecological research. The Australian Acoustic Observatory gets a special mention, as does Professor Dave Watson, one the observatory’s Chief Investigator Managers.

Soundscapes of the Mitchell Grass Rangelands now being recorded

The A2O is currently recording the sounds of the Mitchell Grass Plains, ranging from the calls of arid bird species to the lowing of wandering cattle. Acoustic sensors have been deployed across an actively grazed research station affiliated with QUT and the Terrestrial Ecosystem Research Network outside of Longreach in western Queensland.

A2O welcomes the Tasmanian Land Conservancy’s Five Rivers Reserve

Thank you to Dr Sally Bryant from the Tasmanian Land Conservancy for deploying the A2O’s most southerly acoustic sensor set to date. Four sensors were recently established in the beautiful Five Rivers Reserve in Tasmania’s Central Highlands, recording soundscapes among Snow Gums and along the banks of the Nive River.

Acoustic sensor deployment for Samford Ecological Research Facility (SERF)

There are now four acoustic sensors deployed across QUT’s Samford Ecological Research Facility, found on the outskirts of Brisbane, Queensland. SERF is a 51 hectare property that protects threatened and endangered ecosystems within a mosaic of remnant native vegetation and cleared pasture. The facility is home to a wide range of audible species, including Australia’s largest nocturnal bird, the Powerful Owl (Ninox strenua).