The dataset represents the combined outputs of two student research projects, which are thematically linked. Both projects aimed to collect waterbird census data from waterbodies in the Ballarat region. Overall survey design was chosen to obtain data on population sizes at surveyed lakes / wetlands, in order to make comparisons about relative importance (in terms of species richness and total abundance).
The Urias project focused on conducting simultaneous waterbird surveys at three large lakes, Lake Burrumbeet, Lake Learmonth and Lake Wendouree. Lakes were surveyed by teams of volunteers on the same day, repeated three times over the autumn-spring seasons of 2013. Teams would aim to survey the entire waterbody, although this was occasionally limited by access and size (e.g. Lake Burrumbeet). In addition to counts of individual species, the date, start and end survey time, temperature and general weather conditions, presence of non-waterbird species and human disturbance were also recorded at every lake. Observers were aided by binoculars and / or spotting scopes, and surveys conducted either from a vehicle or on foot. With the exception of Lake Burrumbeet, the volunteer team conducted the entire lake survey. At Lake Burrumbeet, surveyors were split into separate teams and surveyed different sections of the lake, taking care to ensure survey areas did not overlap. Movement of birds between survey areas was noted to ensure that double-counting was avoided where ever possible.
The Howard project focused on conducting waterbird surveys of 10 small wetlands on a single day (starting at 8:00am and finishing by 5:00pm). Wetlands were divided evenly between urban areas and non-urban (usually forested) areas. Four replicate surveys were conducted at each wetland during 2015, 30th March, 4th May, 7th July, 17th September. The order of visitation was switched so wetlands were surveyed at different times on each visit. At each wetland a single observer would makes counts of individual species, and take standard water quality measurements (pH, electrical conductivity EC, total dissolved solids TDS, temperature Temp, turbidity NTU and dissolved oxygen DO) using a HORIBA probe. In addition to waterbird counts and water quality measurements, vegetation surveys were carried out once at each wetland on either the 8th or 9th of August 2015. These were collected using ten 5×5 metre quadrats randomly-placed within 10 metres from the water’s edge of each wetland.
Created: 2013 to 2015
Data time period: 2013 to 2015
143.9431,-37.4245 143.9431,-37.747 144.5947,-37.747 144.5947,-37.4245 143.9431,-37.4245
User Contributed Tags
Login to tag this record with meaningful keywords to make it easier to discover