BDBSA Project Metadata Detail

Survey/Project Number: 665          Total No. of Sites: 318
Survey/Project Name: Bush Stone Curlew Monitoring - Murraylands
Abstract: Flooded areas were sampled as part of a second complete census of the Chowilla Bush Stone-curlew population. Sampling was conducted over the known extent of occurrence on the floodplain of the Chowilla and Ral Ral anabranches. The census used call playback methods to systematically cover this extent from west to east over 12 nights. Geographical sectors were used to manage identification of selected play sites (i.e. from where the call recording was played). Call playback was used to acquire a rough locational fix on individual birds. As a cryptic and nocturnal species, the Bush Stone-curlew is most frequently located by aural means. This can often be assisted by playing a recording of the call to encourage vocal responses from the birds. Call playback is a well-documented means of sampling elusive species, and has been widely used as a survey method in other Bush Stone-curlew studies (Price 2004, Gates 2001). The call playback procedure comprised a five-minute stop at each play site. The recording was played for 30 seconds, observers listened for two minutes, and the sequence once repeated. Recorded calls were projected through two speakers attached to the roof of a vehicle. The direction of any bird calls responding to the recording (`vocal responses') was estimated with a compass, and distance to the responding bird was approximated. Additional notes added by Ellen Krahnert requested by Ellen Ryan-Colton: (other previous notes have not been deleted to retain full data history - Ellen Ryan-Colton may want to alter). A report was produced detailing the distribution of Bush Stone-curlews in the Murraylands using data up until 2007. From 2007 to 2009, the same methodology (call play back for 30 seconds, listen for 2 minutes and repeat once) was used at a reduced number of sites, for up to 6 consecutive nights each month. The aim was to undertake a detectability study across different months of the year to determine the best time of year for continued population monitoring. A report is available that summarises the best detection time for Bush Stone-curlews using call play-back at those locations. Sites included those on the Calperum Floodplain (CALP01,CALP02, CALP09, CALP10, CALP11, HUNC01, HUNC05, RENY01, RENY02, RENY04, RENY05, RENY07, RENY10, RENY12) and Chowilla Floodplain (CHDET01, CHDET02, CHDET03, CHDET04, CHDET05, CHDET06, CHDET08, CHDET10) From 2010 onwards, the same metholodology (call play back for 30 seconds, listen for 2 minutes and repeat once) was used at a the detection sites above, and in winter of each year. Friends of Riverland Parks and DEWNR staff repeated the surveys over 4 nights within the same week (usually consecutive, dependent on weather). However, due to flooding of the floodplain in 2011, and environmental regulator works, some sites were not completed in 2011 and 2012. 2010 sites were completed at Chowilla and Calperum. 2011 and 2012 sites were completed only at Chowilla, missing some due to limited access to work site of environmental regulator.
 
Start Date: 01/01/1900      End Date: 01/01/2020
Survey Type: Unknown
   
Study Area Description: Murraylands Region. Playsites located at: Reny Island, Reny and Hunchee Island, Calperum - main floodplain, Coppermine Waterhole, Chowilla Island, Chowilla and Monomon Islands, Coombool Swamp, Coombool and Gum Flat, Tareena Station, Punkah Island and Tareena and Coppermine, Sedan, Mantung and Kulkyne Creek, Buly Lagoon. Opportune: Sedan, Monash, KOM, Bakara, Cooltong, Gum Flat, Chowilla Game Reserve.
Objectives
         Vegetation: Broad date range entered - needs to be corrected
         Fauna: The objective of this study was to collect distributional information about the Bush Stone-curlew at Chowilla, and assess the effects of environmental watering on the population. Initially spatial information was to be acquired with complementary methods: call playback (a course-scale technique of locating birds from their vocal responses) preceding radio-telemetry (a precise means of tracking an individual with an attached radio-transmitter). That is, call-playback is used to narrow the search area in preparation for capturing the birds and fitting radio-transmitters. However, due to a marked decrease in response of the birds to call-playback over the summer period, radio-telemetry was not considered feasible at that time; insufficient numbers of birds could be located.
Methodology
         Vegetation: *** No vegetation methodology recorded
         Fauna: Flooded areas were sampled as part of a second complete census of the Chowilla Bush Stone-curlew population. Sampling was conducted over the known extent of occurrence on the floodplain of the Chowilla and Ral Ral anabranches. The census used call playback methods to systematically cover this extent from west to east over 12 nights. Geographical sectors were used to manage identification of selected play sites (i.e. from where the call recording was played). Call playback was used to acquire a rough locational fix on individual birds. As a cryptic and nocturnal species, the Bush Stone-curlew is most frequently located by aural means. This can often be assisted by playing a recording of the call to encourage vocal responses from the birds. Call playback is a well-documented means of sampling elusive species, and has been widely used as a survey method in other Bush Stone-curlew studies (Price 2004, Gates 2001). The call playback procedure comprised a five-minute stop at each play site. The recording was played for 30 seconds, observers listened for two minutes, and the sequence once repeated. Recorded calls were projected through two speakers attached to the roof of a vehicle. The direction of any bird calls responding to the recording (`vocal responses') was estimated with a compass, and distance to the responding bird was approximated. The reliability estimates for the new BSC data (post 2010) is based on the estimated distance the birds call is heard from the site point. So we go to the same point every year, but we may here a bird an estimate its only 100 metres away, or then another year (or even another night) it may be much more faint and we estimate 1km away. We also take a bearing of the sound of the birds call and plot these predicted bird locations based on estimated distance and bearing.

Data Distribution Rules: Public
Project Basis: Fauna : Fauna species/population Study (ie trapping records over time period for species study). NOTE:NON Std Svy methodology may have been used.
Information Authority: Department for Environment and Heritage (BDBSA:Murraylands) - Regional Ecologist