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Take Part

You can now book your surveys on a brand new, crowd-funded map, with some great extra features. Whether you're an old hand or starting afresh, you'll first need to sign up to the new system - then jump right in and explore!

To get a handle on eagle numbers, we need to spread our efforts widely across Tasmania. We have a registration map, so that you can choose and book your own survey area.

What do you need to do during the survey? Each team surveys a 4 km x 4 km square, on up to three of the official dates (mid- and end-May). On the day, we do six 10-minute surveys in different parts of the square, starting each survey either on the hour or the half hour, any time between 8 am and 4.30 pm. You can potentially cover two nearby survey squares in one day - but many of us prefer to take our time and enjoy the area! Find out more, and hone your bird ID skills, via Prepare.

Where might you survey? Explore the map. Can you reach an undersurveyed area, like NW or SW Tasmania, or the Midlands...

How to choose your survey square(s)

Things to think about:

+ Which date?

The 2021 surveys are on 14-16 & 28-30 May, between 8 am and 4.30 pm (to get the best light).

Each 4 km x 4 km square has six possible booking days. Each square-day can only be booked once, and when any three days are booked, you won't be able to book more. There may be a survey already booked at your preferred square on your preferred date - check if it's available for booking on a different day. If nothing fits, please Contact Us and we’ll see if we can help work something out for you.

+ Which square?

Can you survey there safely, and do you have permission? Wherever you go, it's a good idea to check all the details of your square in advance. You can see the terrain and the land tenure on the map (check 'Manage Layers' at the top right - zoom in, and try ticking & unticking boxes and sliding the sliders). The square, or the area you need to cross to reach it, may be privately owned or be physically challenging to travel through. Ask landowners about permissions and any other potential issues. Make sure that you and your team are all able to reach and move around the square safely, and that everyone is aware of and comfortable with any risks involved.

Make sure you choose a square in which you can survey from six different locations. Each of the six 10-minute surveys in a day needs to be in a different place within the square. To maximise your chances of seeing an eagle, if it's there - or any of the other birds we're recording - you might choose at least some sites which have a big view, such as an open field. But a mixture of habitats is a good idea too. You might have the best chance of seeing a perching eagle if some of your sites are along a forest edge.

Choose somewhere where - whether or not you see any birds of prey - you get to have a wonderful day out, and know that you're contributing to the science just as much as everyone else. To get good information on how the numbers are changing, we need surveys from areas where eagles are rarely seen – not just the areas where there are lots of eagles.

More details on what's possible, and most useful, below.

+ Can I book more than one square?

Well that would be wonderful, but don’t overstretch yourselves!

On any one survey day, we need six 10-minute surveys in your booked square, between 8:00 am and 4:30 pm, starting either on the hour or on the half hour (e.g. 9:00, 10:00, 10:30 etc.), from different points within your square. So, with good roads or tracks, it may be possible to cover two nearby squares in one day, but it will be hard work. We recommend that you prioritise having a safe and enjoyable day!

If you can take part this year for more than one day, please consider surveying the same square for 2-3 days. The survey results will be more meaningful* if we have, overall, fewer squares surveyed for more days rather than more squares surveyed for fewer days.

*We'd be able to detect a much smaller change in eagle population size from year to year.

+ What's the most useful?

It would most helpful to the survey if you can book a square in an area that no one else is likely to get to. That might be somewhere really remote, or it might be an area of private land owned by you or a friend (just make sure it’s safe for you to survey, and that you have permission). Try zooming out to find large areas where no one else has booked. The survey squares are in a regular pattern across Tasmania, in order to sample all types of habitat, to spread everyone’s effort widely across Tasmania, and to reduce the risk of people counting the same eagle in more than one square.

We need at least two (ideally three) survey-days for each square - so if you can just do one day, consider picking a square that has already been booked for one or two days.

+ I'd like to help but...

We’d like you to take part in whatever capacity you can manage. We will be posting and emailing information on workshops about the survey methods, and on options to participate in ‘practice’ surveys and to help with additional, related research. We also welcome volunteers to help coordinate the survey - please Contact Us to learn more.

If you’d like extra help in any way, get in touch via the Contact page, or NatureTrackers Twitter or Facebook, and we’ll see what’s possible.

+ Important: if you need to cancel...

Life is full of surprises! If it turns out you need to cancel, please let us know straight away. Once you’ve booked your square, everyone else will know that you’ve already got it covered, so they will prioritise booking other squares. You can see which square(s) you've booked under My Bookings on the map (near the right hand corner), and you can cancel via this page. Having problems cancelling? Please immediately Contact Us.

Using the map

To start out, check out the Information and Help (?) panels within the booking system.

If the map isn't doing what you want, try starting over – refresh the web page by e.g. clicking the “refresh” or “reload” arrow button at the top of your browser window.

Trouble booking your square? First, check out the Help (?) and Information panels within the booking system. Still no luck? Please get in touch (let us know what device and browser you're using e.g. Mac laptop, Safari; or Android tablet, Chrome).

To print, use your computer’s ‘print screen’ function. Here’s how for Windows and Mac.

You can also enter the digital latitude and longitude of your square into other web-based maps (e.g. Google Maps) to get different information on the area.

Booking and data entry on this website and on the app are virtually identical. Here's a video to introduce you to all aspects of booking and data entry on both.

Email: info@naturetrackers.com.au

Twitter: @nature_trackers

Facebook: facebook.com/NatureTrackers1

YouTube: youtube.com/user/BookendTrust/videos

Nature Trackers is a Bookend Trust initiative. Bookend Trust is a not-for-profit education initiative that seeks to inspire students and their communities with the positive environmental careers they can build making the world a better place. Funded through the donation of time, energy and resources by private individuals concerned about building a positive and co-operative environmental future for our students and community.

Copyright © 2018 Bookend Trust. All Rights Reserved.
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