This blog post is provided by Sarah Raymond and tells the #StoryBehindthePaper for the paper ‘The impact of the COVID-19 lockdowns on wildlife-vehicle collisions in the UK’, which was recently published in Journal of Animal Ecology. In their study, Sarah and colleagues utilize the reduction of traffic due to COVID-lockdowns and citizen science data on roadkill to study which traits make species vulnerable to being … Continue reading COVID-19 lockdowns and citizen science data reveal species traits most vulnerable to mortality on roads
The fifth and final episode in our Citizen Science Special Issue podcast is live. Mark Ditmer tells us about their paper Artificial night light helps account for observer bias in citizen science monitoring of an expanding large mammal population, which was part of the Citizen Science Special Feature. Featured image: An American black bear collared for research by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources rests after snacking … Continue reading Citizen Science Podcast: Mark Ditmer
The fourth episode in our Citizen Science Special Issue podcast is live. Heather Williams tells us about their paper Support for a relationship between demography and modeled habitat suitability is scale dependent for the purple martin Progne subis, which was part of the Citizen Science Special Feature. Featured image: Purple martin nestlings (about 2 days old). © Adam Wilson. COMING UP: 25/02/2021 – Journal of Animal Ecology: Citizen Science … Continue reading Citizen Science Podcast: Heather Williams
Ecological projects involving citizen scientists have rapidly increased in number and there is now a general consensus that they can produce high-quality data. Citizen science projects generate large datasets that allow novel ecological questions to be addressed, but can require developing both new analytical tools to handle big data and large open-data platforms. Citizen science projects can also play an important role in engaging people with … Continue reading Call for papers: Special Feature on citizen science
Continuing from last week’s post describing the challenges faced by Arctic skuas, Dr Allan Perkins (RSPB Centre for Conservation Science) is back with some advice on what you can to to help. Arctic skuas may well be heading towards extinction as a breeding species within the UK. That is the stark warning from our recent study, which found that Arctic skuas have declined by 81% in Scotland. What … Continue reading How can you help Arctic skuas?
A new citizen-science initiative has just been launched in southern Australia. But don’t worry if you’re not local – volunteers can assist from anywhere in the world thanks to the online platform! Here to tell us more is Dr Rebecca McIntosh (with some help from Ross Holmberg) from Phillip Island Nature Parks. Australian fur seals (Arctocephalus pusillus doriferus) are near-apex predators, and have been recognised … Continue reading Building “SealSpotter” and Working with Citizen Scientists
Being similar can be problematic. When ecologically-similar species co-occur, competition can result. So how can this be avoided? A recent paper published in the Journal of Animal Ecology shows how birds avoid their sibling-species competitors. Authors Lechosław Kuczyński, Anna Skoracka, Jiri Reif and Radka Reifova explain. Mechanisms that enable coexistence of ecologically-similar species are crucial in maintaining biological diversity. When such species co‑occur they inevitably compete for resources, such as … Continue reading How do birds avoid their sibling-species competitors?
As well as being fascinating creatures with a unique sensory ecology, bats are also potentially useful indicator species whose population trends may help to provide broader information about the health of ecosystems. To mark Halloween, Ella Browning and Rory Gibb describe new research developing smart tools to more effectively and accurately monitor bat populations across the globe. Ella Browning and Rory Gibb are both PhD … Continue reading New technologies for listening to bats
The study of phenology – cyclical patterns of biological events – has long been used to investigate relationships between climate and natural phenomena. In this way, events such as bird migrations, animal breeding periods and plant flowing can be predicted, knowledge which has numerous economic and conservation applications. However, climate change can alter these timings, with dramatic consequences for a range of species. To illustrate … Continue reading Mild winters have butterflies in a flap