Citizen Science

The Sanctuary’s primary aim is to provide opportunities for learning about indigenous flora and fauna through engaging with the community. The Sanctuary offers valuable habitat in an otherwise suburban desert and is linked to other large tracts of remnant grassy woodland such as Gresswell Forest and Gresswell Hill Nature Conservation Reserves by the revegetated Gresswell Habitat Link.

Citizen science involves the collection of scientific data from the natural world by everyday people for use in on- ground management.  Citizen science is often part of large scale collaborative projects with scientists, managers, students and the general public and is a fantastic way to involve the community in projects that affect them locally.

Register your interest for Citizen Science events

Sign up for a particular event

La Trobe Wildlife Sanctuary currently have the following scheduled citizen science projects that you can get involved in.

Frog Censuses

Spotted Marsh FrogConducted four times per year, frog species are surveyed at 16 sites around the La Trobe Wildlife Sanctuary.  Surveys are conducted after dark and consist of a short presentation followed by timed recordings after dusk and data tallying.  Data is shared with the Melbourne Water Frog Census and the Atlas of Living Australia and is used to inform staff on wetland management within the Sanctuary.

Stag Watches

KookaburraConducted four times per year, hollows and nesting boxes are observed across a range of habitat types within the Sanctuary.  Surveys are conducted after dark for one hour and evenings consist of a half hour presentation, observations and data tallying.  Data is shared with the Atlas of Living Australia and is used to inform management on topics such as nesting box installation and requirements for revegetation of food/shelter plants for wildlife.

Little Creatures Bio-Blitz

Little Creatures BioBlitzConducted throughout the warmer months of the year from January to April when invertebrate activity is at its peak. The project involves producing a photographic record of the amazing diversity of invertebrates which inhabit the Sanctuary.  This project is ongoing and can be undertaken any time during opening hours.

Fungi Foray

FungiConducted in the autumn months from April to June when fungi are most obvious.  This project involves collecting a photographic record of the fungi of the Sanctuary.  Photographs of habitat, cross sections and size comparisons help to assist in the identification of fungal diversity.  Information is shared with Fungimap and is integral to understanding how biodiversity changes over time.

Water Bird Surveys

Swamp HenConducted throughout the year, involves identification of bird species present at a number of designated observation points throughout the Wildlife Sanctuary. Data is shared with the Atlas of Living Australia and will give us an idea on the benefits of removing predators from this ecosystem as we will have data collected from before foxes are removed and after.

Feather Map

FeatherWe would like to be able to contribute specimens from our wetlands to this wonderful project. Become a citizen scientist today by collecting wetland bird feathers you find on the ground or in the water and help create the first ever Feather Map of Australia.

All you need to do is

Place the feathers in an envelope including the following information:

  • date of collection
  • location of collection (Preferably can you please add your co-ordinate information i.e. GPS location, latitude and longitude, if available. These can be taken from smart phones or google maps)
  • a list of the birds you identified using the wetland
  • type of bird feather, if you know it. It's OK if you don't (Remember to keep each feather separate if you do and tag it)

You can drop envelopes into the office after your visit in the Sanctuary