Thank you to everyone who participated in our autumn count this year. The weather during the count week was less than ideal for pollinator spotting in many parts of the country, with our great continent living up to its diverse nature! This is a great example of how unpredictable field-based science can be – the best laid plans can be dashed at the last minute by bad weather.
We received just over 580 usable records this count from over 200 unique postcode locations (click on the image below to view interactively in Google Maps). Records came in from all states and territories.
Over 4,500 individual insects were observed in our count categories. Again, the European honey bee was the most commonly observed flower visitor, followed by our native bees.
Number of individuals
Percentage of all categories
BEES – European honey bees
BEES – Blue-banded bees
BEES – Other bees
BEETLES – Ladybird beetles
BEETLES – Other beetles
BUTTERFLIES and MOTHS
FLIES – Hoverflies
FLIES – Other flies
WASPS – European wasps
WASPS – Other wasps
Most of the flowering plants that were observed were exotic (67%), with the remainder being native (33%). Similar to other counts, this is likely because many people are doing counts in their gardens where we tend to find a higher proportion of exotic plants.
Only a few records were not able to be included in our data, as they didn’t meet the reporting requirements – the most common issues were counts that entered estimated numbers in the categories (e.g. ‘over 100’) instead of actual counts, and counts that observed multiple flowers or whole sections of a garden, rather than focusing on a single plant species.
Thank you again, we really appreciate you participating and hope you enjoyed counting as much as we did!
Check out the photo gallery from this count, with thanks to people who gave us permission to share their photos showcasing our diverse backyard pollinating insects. You can also find our project on iNaturalist as usual – and don’t forget you can continue adding your iNat pollinator observations to our project year round.
Thank you to everyone who joined in the Wild Pollinator Count last week!
Just a reminder the submission form will remain open until this Sunday 25 April to give you time to enter your observations – remember we can only accept counts conducted during the count week 11-18 April.
Once the submission form closes, we will start cleaning and collating the data. Results will be posted here sometime in May!
Last year, we asked our Wild Pollinator Count network to contribute to some research conducted by colleagues in Germany, looking at why people participate in biodiversisty citizen science programs and what they gain from it.
The research has now been published in the British Ecological Society journal People and Nature. Survey respondents reported positive changes in all the target outcomes, including environmental behaviours and scientific interest and knowledge. The paper is open access, and you can read it here:
Wild Pollinator Count time has rolled around again. The autumn 2021 count runs from 11-18 April.
This has been another challenging summer in many parts of Australia, with fires on the west and floods on the east, so you may see a change in your local pollinators. Hope you are all safe.
During the count week, you just need to take 10 minutes to watch a flowering plant and count the numbers of different flower visitors you see. Find out more about How to Count here. Remember, you should only watch a single flowering plant – we cannot accept observations that have observed multiple different plants at once within a garden.
It took us a little longer than usual to collate results this year, for understandable reasons! It’s been a challenging year, and we hope you’re all keeping safe and well.
The spring count happened 8-15 November 2020. We received just over 1000 submitted observations (1028 usable records, 18 were removed for incomplete data) representing over 12,000 insects! This is a drop from our all-time submissions record in autumn 2020 (in the midst of the first COVID lockdowns!), but still well above last spring’s count. Thank you to all who participated during what has been a difficult year for all of us.
Spring 2020 Wild Pollinator Count starts Sunday 8th November. You have until Sunday 15th November to do a count. You can do as many 10 minute counts as you want, any time during the count week, from anywhere in Australia!
Find out How to Count here. Remember, each count must focus on one flowering plant. Find out more about the science behind our method on our FAQ page. You don’t need to take photos to submit a count, but you’re welcome to share them with us if you do – you can do this via email or via our iNaturalist project page.