ClimateWatch

An initiative of Earthwatch Institute

How to record on a ClimateWatch trail

Walking and recording on a ClimateWatch trail is a great way to contribute to the program and share the experience of ClimateWatching with other people.

Using the example of the Piney Lakes Reserve trail, we take you through the best way to make recordings using the Recording Sheet and enter observations on ClimateWatch.

 

 

On the Recording Sheet

Date and Time

In the top right you can write down the date and time you started walking on the trail.

 
The Map
The map shows the saved locations (yellow dots) which can be accessed when entering records online, and also shows the major features such as roads, buildings and water.
 
Record on plants at the saved locations
The key locations highlight where there are plants to observe.  Recording on the plants at these locations helps to develop a very detailed data set of individual plants. 
 
Record other species you see along the trail
In addition to recording on the plants at the saved locations you can record on any other plants and animals you see along the trail. Mark the new location on your recording sheet map with an X.
 
Recording Format
To quickly and easily make lots of records on the map, next to the X record each observation using this format:
Species/How Many/Behaviour/Additional Comments
 
Codes and what they mean
To help make it quick and easy to record lots of observations we have developed a table of codes you can use at the bottom of the recording sheet.  There are codes for the species and codes for the behaviours. The example below shows some plants and plant phenophase/behaviour codes.
Plants and Behaviours
 
Examples
This section of the map below shows 3 observations
Piney Lakes Map Example
Record 1
Species - Marri
How Many - 1
Behaviour - End of Flowering
 
Record 2
Species - Slender Banksia
How Many - 1
Behaviour - End of Flowering
 
Record 3
Species - Rainbow Bee-eater
How Many - 1
Behaviour - Calling

 

On the website

Recording on plants at the saved locations

The key locations (yellow dots) on the recording sheet have been saved in the survey, you can select them from the Locations list. For the Piney Lakes Reserve trail the saved locations are:

A PLR Marri at the end of the Carpark

B PLR Slender Banksia and Native Buttercup

C PLR Wild Gladiolus south of the firebreak

D PLR WA Christmas tree south of the firebreak

E PLR Native wisteria on the fence

F PLR Shelter near lake

 

Select an option from the Locations list

Start typing in the common name or scientific name and the Species field will bring up a list of options. Select the species you are recording on from this list.

Complete the remaining fields and click

Submit and Add Another

 

Recording on species at other locations you see along the trail (where you have marked X on the map)

Zoom in and click on the map to enter the location of the sighting. Click and drag the yellow dot to correct the location.

Start typing in the common name or scientific name and the Species field will bring up a list of options. Select the species you are recording on from this list.

Complete the remaining fields and click

 

Submit and Add Another

 

Once you have entered all your records click

 

Submit

 

You can edit your sightings under My Sightings, found by clicking on 'My Account' in the top right-hand corner when you are logged in. On this page, you can select from the Project list to find the right set of records from a particular trail.

 

Walking with a group

When walking with a group, ClimateWatch wants each person to record what they observe and enter the observations online.  This is so the observations can be matched against the group to help improve explanations and fieldguides. 

Also when you record at other locations scientists can be more confident in your observations since you have had some experience.

Enjoy walking the trail with others and recording what you see, but keep recording when you see or hear species at home and in other locations.  Scientists want your observations.