Time to start counting!

Spring Wild Pollinator Count starts now: Sunday 11 November 2018!

You have until next Sunday the 18th to do a 10-minute count. Pick any day when the weather is warm and sunny and find a flower to watch. Click here for instructions on how to do your count.

And don’t forget to submit your observations via our online form to contribute to our long-term data on plant-pollinator interactions across Australia.

You can do as many counts as you want during the count week. We will leave the submission form open until November 25 to allow you time to upload your observations. Results will be posted here on the blog in early December.

Hope you enjoy the spring count and we’re looking forward to seeing your observations!

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Native halictid bee on a billy button flower head.

Springtime Count 2018

It’s almost time for our Spring 2018 Wild Pollinator Count! This year, the count will run 11-18 November. Connect with us on social media with the official hashtag #OzPollinators.

It’s really easy to join in, wherever you are in Australia – just pick a warm, sunny day during the official count week, find a flower to watch for 10 minutes, and then submit your observations via our online form. Just follow the instructions on the How to Count page. As usual, the form will stay open for one week after the 18th, to allow you time to get your observations in.

The sprinter weather here in Armidale hasn’t been ideal for pollinator spotting so far. But there have been plenty of fly pollinators active on all the early-spring flowering plants. I’m looking forward to seeing what insects are out and about visiting flowers in a few weeks.

Here are some handy tips for how to tell the difference between bees, flies and wasps visiting flowers. And don’t forget you can download our Pollinator Guide here, as well as plenty of other resources and answers to some FAQ.

Happy Spring Counting…And if you miss out this time, we’ll be counting again in April 2019!

If you’re new to Wild Pollinator Count, we are an independent project run by scientists focused on pollinator conservation in Australia – find out more about us here.

Nov18 WPC tag

Last chance to count!

This is the final weekend to contribute to the autumn 2018 Wild Pollinator Count. Thank you to everyone who has already submitted an observation. We’ve had nearly 200 observations already, from every state and territory!

Thanks also to everyone who submitted photos with their observations – you can check out some of the great snaps here. Remember, you don’t need to take a photo to submit an observation, and you can also share your photo with us on social media using the official Wild Pollinator Count hashtag #ozpollinators.

You can count right up until Sunday evening (15th April), and you will have plenty of time to submit the observation if you can’t get online immediately. The submission form will remain open until Sunday 22nd April.

Thanks again and we hope you enjoyed the autumn count!

cuckoo

Autumn 2018 count begins

The autumn 2018 Wild Pollinator Count starts this weekend across Australia!

You can count pollinator insects on flowers at any time between the morning of Sunday April 8 and the evening of Sunday April 15. It only takes 10 minutes to complete a count. It could be at your home or in a park, reserve or elsewhere.

We know autumn can be a challenging time to find both flowers and insects, particularly in areas that are cool or dry. But that makes this season’s count all the more interesting – often the insects seen are quite different to those from our spring counts! Don’t forget that if you complete a count without seeing any insects we’d still like to know about it as an observation, so please do complete a submission.

As usual, the submission form will remain open for a week after the count period, in case you find it easier to count first and submit your data later. You’re welcome to complete just one count, or many!

Please follow the instructions on our How to Count page and submit your observations here. If you need help identifying the types of insects you are seeing, please have a look at our resources pages for our ID tips sheet and printable guide to pollinator insects. Rest assured it’s not necessary to be able to identify insects to species to join in; we make it way easier than that! And we’ve even noted some Wild Pollinator Count FAQ.

We invite you to share your pollinator count photos and experiences on social media. Our official hashtag is #OzPollinators, please feel free to use it, so we can see your content and share it, too!

Happy counting!

cuckoo

 

 

One week to go

We hope you’ve been out spotting wild pollinators in your local area over the summer!

The autumn count is fast approaching (one week to go!). So if you participated in the spring 2017 count, this is your chance to see what’s changed in your backyard.

The next count runs from 8-15 April 2018same rules apply, watch a flower for 10 minutes on a warm sunny day and tell us what you see via the form on our website.

Also have a look at some of our previous blog posts on how to make sure your garden is an attractive spot for pollinators, especially over winter (hopefully you don’t have to go to Queensland to find some).

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Last day to count

Thank you to everyone who has already submitted observations for the spring 2017 Wild Pollinator Count! We’ve had over 200 submissions so far, with plenty more rolling in.

Sunday November 19th is the last day to count. If you haven’t had a chance to count yet, hopefully the rest of the weekend is warm and sunny in your part of the country!

The observation form will remain open until November 25 to give you time to enter your counts. We will post the results here on the blog in early December.

Hope you found something interesting in your backyard during this count! You can join in again for the autumn count in April 2018.

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Only a few days to go!

The spring 2017 Wild Pollinator Count starts this Sunday 12 November and runs until the following Sunday 19 November. You can count pollinators anywhere in Australia, on any warm sunny during that week! Find more details on how to count here and some answers to common questions here.

We have plenty of resources to help you identify the insects you see (and remember, we don’t need to know species). Have a look at our printable brochure of common pollinators and our handy guide to distinguishing between different types of insects.

Once you’ve finished a count (you can do more than one!), please submit your observations via our online form. The form will stay open for submissions until 26 November, but we can’t accept any counts done after November 19. Results will be posted on the blog in early December.

And don’t forget you can share your photos and counting tips with us on social media using the official hashtag #ozpollinators.

Happy Counting!

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Autumn 2017 count starts

The autumn 2017 Wild Pollinator Count starts this weekend!

You can count pollinators anywhere in Australia at any time between the morning of Sunday April 9 and the evening of Sunday April 16. All you need is 10 minutes to watch a flowering plant in your backyard or neighbourhood. The submission form will remain open for a few days after the count period, if you find it easier to count first and submit your data later.

Please follow the instructions on our How to Count page and submit your observations here. If you need help identifying the types of insects you are seeing, please have a look at our Resources page and read our Wild Pollinator Count FAQ.

If you’re new to Wild Pollinator Count, this blog post from last year details what we’re about and this page explains who is behind this independent citizen science project.

Please share your pollinator count experiences on social media, and don’t forget to include our official hashtag #OzPollinators to connect with us.

Happy counting!

 

What pollinators will you see this autumn?

The autumn 2017 Wild Pollinator Count is on soon! The next national count runs from April 9 to 16.

You can count pollinators using our standardised 10 minute observation methods at any time during that week and submit your observations through our online form. Check out our identification resources if you need some help identifying insects. Remember, you don’t need to give us species names, just general insect groups (see the form for the types of data we ask for).

Our last autumn count in April 2016 collected over 200 observations from 86 localities across the eastern and southern states. But in spring 2016, we extended our records to Western Australia too. Hopefully we will get some observations from the Northern Territory this year!

Autumn is the season for winding down and preparing for the winter hibernation. And it’s an important season for pollinators. Many insect pollinator species are provisioning their last nest cells or laying their last eggs before winter. So plants that flower in autumn can be important resources for the next generation of pollinators we will see in spring.

If you’re not sure what is flowering in your local area, start scouting for potential flowers to observe now. With lots of rain in some parts of the country over summer and early autumn, you may be surprised at what plants are enjoying a renewed burst of colour!

If you can’t contribute this time round, the national count is on again in the second full week (Sunday to Sunday) in November and April every year.

Happy counting!

Native bee on sticky daisy bush (Olearia sp.)

Do you have common ivy in your garden?

Have you seen a patch of mature common ivy (Hedera helix) flowering near you? Do you have a couple of minutes each week to film what insects are visiting the ivy flowers?

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A native potter wasp on ivy flowers.

A new international collaborative research project is looking at what insects visit ivy flowers in its native (UK) and introduced range. Ivy flowers in autumn, so it is an important pollen source for many pollinator insects as the winter months approach. In its introduced range where the plant has become invasive, information on its pollinators could help develop effective control methods.

The citizen science project is led by Fergus Chadwick (Trinity College, Dublin) and Professor Jeff Ollerton (University of Northampton). Dr Manu Saunders and Amy-Marie Gilpin (both University of New England) will be managing the Australian arm of the project.

The project needs citizen scientists to contribute weekly videos of insects visiting their local ivy patch!

Citizen Science Project Monitoring the Pollinators of Ivy

You can use any technology you like, even a smartphone. You just have to film at the same spot once a week during the flowering season and upload your video via the project’s Facebook page with some information about the location. Please make sure to read all the details in manual linked to below before getting started – it’s important that everyone’s contributions are filmed in the same way so we can compare data. We prefer videos to be uploaded on the Facebook page; however, if you are not a FB user and still want to contribute, you can email us your video and data to ivypollinatorsaustralia@gmail.com.

Ivy has already started flowering in some parts of Australia, so you may have missed the first few weeks! But please join in anyway – the project will continue again next year and you will have the opportunity to contribute to the full season then.

Note: Ivy is an introduced species and can be invasive in many parts of Australia. Therefore, we are not promoting planting of new ivy plants. This project is based on observations of established ivy plants.

If you are not sure whether you have found Hedera helix, visit this page for some photos and ID tips.

If you would like to get involved, please visit the project’s Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/groups/PollinatorsofIvyMonitoringProjectAustralia/. You can find details on the project and how you can get involved in this document. Or you can email the project team at ivypollinatorsaustralia@gmail.com.

And don’t forget the National Wild Pollinator Count is on again soon, at its usual time. You can join in by counting pollinators on any flowering plants (not just ivy!) between 9-16 April.