BDInsight – November 2023

Ringing News

Bird ringing remains one of the most important research methods for discovering some of the most important basic information about each species. Conservation initiatives need a lot of information. Two key factors to understand are rates of survival and extent of movement. There is a discussion about the value of ringing here.

Eastern Clapper Lark
Eastern Clapper Lark

There are three ringing courses planned for 2024. They are:

  • 31 January to 6 February at BoTuin, Vanrhynsdorp, Western Cape
  • 1 to 7 May at Ouberg Private Nature Reserve, Montagu, Western Cape
  • 20 to 26 September at New Holme Lodge, near Hanover, Northern Cape.
  • More details are here. There is a broad description of the course activities here.

New Biodiversity Observations Papers in October 2023

Biodiversity Observations is an Open Access ejournal which focuses on the publication of descriptive papers which report observations relating to biodiversity. There is a summary of the activities of the journal for the period 2010-2022 here.

The graph below shows that Biodiversity Observations had its best month ever for number of papers downloaded; 3173 downloads of papers were made.

Biodiversity Observations for BDInishgt November 2023

The latest paper in BO comes all the way from Iceland! And takes a look at the fauna and flora Vigur Island. This study presents the initial findings of a pilot intertidal inventory conducted on Vigur Island. The primary focus was to identify the flora species present in the intertidal zone, without delving into their distribution or coverage. Using transect and scanning methods, this inventory provides insights into the biodiversity of this coastal region. This preliminary assessment lays the groundwork for future comprehensive studies on the island’s intertidal biodiversity. You can read the full paper here.

Biodiversity Observations
The observer scans around the last quadrat of a transect in the intertidal zone of Vigur Island, Iceland

BDI-style Bird Species Texts

We are aiming to make it easier for beginner birders! Key to this is the production of “BDI-style” species texts on the BDI website. Each of the texts starts with an annotated photograph like this one for the Pale-winged Starling:

Pale-winged Starling IF

The BDI-style texts do not only focus on identification but provides all sorts of interesting information; to see the full text for this species, click here.

We added texts for four species during October 2023:

This brings the number of bird species with BDI-style species texts to 84. You can easily find all the texts for species which have been done so far here: Bird Species

The Virtual Museum

The Virtual Museum (VM) provides the platform for citizen scientists to contribute to biodiversity research and mapping projects. This innovative concept was originally developed by the Animal Demography Unit at the University of Cape Town (UCT) in 2005. It is now managed by the Biodiversity and Development Institute (an independent non-profit company) and the FitzPatrick Institute of African Ornithology (UCT).

Virtual Museum for BDInsight November 2023