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Earthwatch Annual Appeal 2012

Posted in Seeking by earthwatch on June 8th, 2012

Earthwatch Annual Appeal 2012

Earthwatch Institute is an international not-for-profit environmental organisation which brings science and people together to promote understanding and action necessary for a sustainable environment.
In partnership with scientists, business, government and philanthropic organisations Earthwatch engages a broad range of people in environmental scientific research expeditions in over 50 countries.
According to the CSIRO, Australia has just experienced the hottest decade on record. The climate change science is compelling, but the impact on Australia’s unique flora and fauna remains largely unknown. Earthwatch has developed two new climate change research projects, aimed at building their knowledge and tackling this unparalleled challenge.

The challenge

The rainforests of Northern Queensland’s World Heritage Listed Wet Tropics are home to endangered species such as the northern bettong, mahogany glider, spotted tail quoll and southern cassowary. The cassowary is the only animal that can distribute the seeds of more than 70 species of trees, whose fruit is too large for any other forest dwelling animal to eat and relocate. If land temperatures increase as predicted, only 11% of their habitat will remain, leaving them exposed to further environmental threats. Prof. Stephen Williams and Earthwatch volunteers, require funding to expand this research on the vulnerability of rainforest species and their potential for adapting to climate change.

Coastal mangrove forests are among the richest, most diverse and most vulnerable landscapes on Earth. Mangroves shield coastlines from storms and cyclones, help prevent shoreline erosion, filter pollutants and are nurseries for manta rays, sharks and turtles. They support over 50% of the world’s fisheries and store vast amounts of greenhouse gases. Yet, mangroves are being destroyed at four times the rate of land forests. Working in the Daintree, Dr Norm Duke and volunteers want to set a baseline for assessing the health of unprotected mangroves around the world. Their work will make the case for mangroves to be included in United Nations initiatives to price the carbon stored in different ecosystems and thereby facilitate their protection.

Make a donation today, make a difference

Financial support is vital for Earthwatch to continue funding scientists to carry out critical, conservation research, assisted by our extraordinary volunteers. Your generosity and commitment to helping scientists provide the evidence needed to conserve these remarkable ecosystems is greatly appreciated. Please take the time to donate by visiting or phoning Earthwatch on 03 9682 6828

Every dollar really does count.

Turtles on the Move: Join a one-day research team

Posted in Research, Seeking by earthwatch on March 5th, 2012

Are Melbourne’s freshwater turtles at risk?
Join a one day research team and help answer this vital question!

Why are you needed? Very little is known about Melbourne’s fresh water turtles, and particularly the impact that this growing city is having on their health. As one of the top predators in the food chain, a healthy turtle population points to a healthy ecosystem, and globally, freshwater turtles are in decline.
What you will be dong With special waterproof clothing, you’ll wade through the city’s freshwater lakes and creeks to capture turtles, assess their health and review the condition of their habitat. Help scientists and governments answer this pivotal question: ‘how is urbanisation impacting the survival of Melbourne’s native turtles?
Details: This expedition is open to over 18’s only with total cost being $69 which covers lunch and transport from Melbourne University. All funds will also go back into this vital research.
How to Book: Call Earthwatch on 03 9682 6828 or email

Dates: Monday 19th, 21st or 23rd March 2012

Time: 7am-6pm

Web Links

Turtles on the Move

Koalas in the Otways: Research volunteers

Posted in Movements, Seeking by EarthwatchAustralia on December 21st, 2011

A new research project Conserving Koala Country has been established by Earthwatch Australia to look into the deteriorating habitat and tree condition in the Otway Ranges, Victoria.

Dr Desley Whisson a Wildlife and Conservation Biologist from Deakin University says, “so far we’ve been tracking the movement of 15 koalas (8 females/7 males) at Cape Otway and observed a high density of koalas in the area of up to 16 koalas per hectare”.  In many parts of Australia Koala’s are in decline and at risk of extinction due to disease, land clearing and drought, however the high density of Koalas is posing a potential issue in The Otways.  During the recent research trip during mating season the research team made up of Earthwatch volunteers recorded vocalisation of the koalas using a songmeter; a device set to record bellows for 5 minutes every hour. Volunteers recorded the number of bellows and whether it’s a male or female.

“We found a high number of koalas with young so it looks like a successful breeding year. The koalas are occupying very small home ranges where trees are still in good condition. They obviously don’t need to move far to find food or mates. A 3 legged female adult koala was also found, something very unusual to see and particularly for her to have survived to adulthood, ” says Dr Whisson. Volunteers also ventured out at night with a spotlight to search for possums that could also be causing defoliation of trees. They saw lots of koalas but only found possums in one blue gum site. Richard Gilmore Earthwatch Executive Director says “It’s great to be able to be able to support research aimed at protecting the habitat of the iconic koala, and at the same time involve the general public in such a hands-on and interesting way.”

The next team of Earthwatch volunteers will be heading out to do further research on the 18 April.

For more information or to sign up for an Earthwatch expedition call 03 9682 6828, email or visit

Go Wading to Help Melbourne’s Freshwater Turtles

Posted in Events, Seeking by earthwatch on October 25th, 2011

17 November , 2011
8:30 amto5:00 pm
19 November , 2011
8:30 amto5:00 pm

Volunteer to protect Melbourne’s freshwater turtles – 17 & 19 Nov

Very little is known about Melbourne’s freshwater turtles and the impact that this growing city is having on their health. As one of the top predators in the food chain, a healthy turtle population points to a healthy ecosystem, and globally, freshwater turtles are in decline.

With special waterproof clothing, you’ll wade through the city’s freshwater lakes and creeks to capture turtles, assess their health and review the condition of their habitat.

Join a Turtles on the Move team
• Help scientists understand how urbanisation is affecting Melbourne’s turtles
• Discover the city’s hidden wetlands
• Do your bit for the environment

To join a one-day team for $69, call 03 9682 6828 or email or visit

Team info
Thursday, 17 November 2011
Saturday, 19 November 2011

Starts 8:30am and finishes 5pm.
Costs include lunch and transporttation to locations as well as pickup/.drop off to rendezvous location in Melbourne University

Location: each expedition visits two wetland sites in the greater Melbourne region
*Funds will go towards continuing this valuable research

Camp Out and Help Melbourne’s Microbats

Posted in Events, Seeking by earthwatch on October 21st, 2011

4 November , 2011 6:30 pmto5 November , 2011 9:00 am
12 November , 2011 6:30 pmto13 November , 2011 9:00 am

Dusk till dawn – an overnight eco adventure with Melbourne’s Microbats.

This year Melbourne Microbats research teams will be treated to a complete dusk till dawn experience sleeping overnight inside the Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne – something usually unavailable for the general public – while also being able to enjoy the Ford Fiesta Moonlight Cinema in the gardens while waiting for the microbats to come out.  Working directly with researchers Dr Rodney van der Ree and PhD students, you will survey bats using harp traps and record ultrasonic bat calls with hand-held bat detectors and GPS equipment. You and your team will also investigate the diet of urban bats by using light traps to sample nocturnal insect fauna.

We have a number of Family Teams that are open to parents with children aged 10-17 (these run on Saturday nights only).

Costs: $89 per adult and $59 per child (includes snacks, refreshments, accommodation and breakfast)
Times: 6:30pm-9am
All funds go towards keeping this valuable research alive.

To make a booking call  Earthwatch on 03 9682 6828   or email

Dates 2011
Fri 4th Nov
Sat 12th Nov (family team)
Fri 18th Nov
Sat 26th Nov (family team)
Fri 2nd Dec

Dates 2012
Feb 3rd Feb
Sat 11th Feb (family team)
Fri 17th Feb
Sat 25th Feb (family team)
Sat 3rd March (family team)
Sat 3rd Feb (family team)
More information and bookings can also be made via the website


Earthwatch @ Melbourne Sustainability Drinks

Posted in Events by Kate Archdeacon on May 3rd, 2011

4 May , 2011
6:00 pmto8:00 pm

Source: Melbourne Sustainability Drinks

Next Melbourne Sustainability Drinks: 4th May 2011, 6-8pm

Our May guest speaker is Richard Gilmore. Richard joined Earthwatch in 2007 firstly as Operations and Programs Director and was appointed Executive Director that same year. Earthwatch is a not-for-profit environmental organisation which engages people in scientific field research and education to promote the understanding and action necessary for a sustainable environment. Following an Earthwatch two-week volunteer expedition to Kenya, Richard started on a journey of self-awareness that would lead to him becoming CEO of Earthwatch in just 2 years. Richard will provide a personal account of his journey and add his insights as to why people are aware of the many challenges we face, but what it is that holds us back from personal action. He will also describe how Earthwatch is responding to the changing learning needs of the corporate sector, with the development of field-based immersive learning programs for sustainability leaders.

This event provides an opportunity to meet other people interested in creating a more sustainable world, exchange ideas and hear different perspectives about the social and environmental challenges we face. Come and meet a wide range of passionate people who are interested in making a positive difference.  It is non-sponsored (ie: you buy your own drinks!) and the atmosphere enables people to introduce themselves and feel comfortable with meeting new people and exchanging ideas. Please join us and invite your friends and colleagues who share the same values.

The May door prize is kindly donated by Just Africa: Specialists in African Art since 1970

Due to the ever increasing popularity of the event, we are sometimes unable to accommodate people who do not RSVP. Please RSVP here.

Please note – Melbourne Sustainability Drinks has relocated to Slate Bar & Restaurant, Mezzanine, 9 Goldsborough Lane Melbourne VIC 3000

Earthwatch Australia – get involved!

Posted in Seeking by EarthwatchAustralia on March 1st, 2011

Earthwatch engages regular citizens in scientific field research alongside scientists to work together for a sustainable planet. As a not-for-profit organization, Earthwatch is committed to conserving the diversity and integrity of life on Earth. The need for further research into species, habitat management, agricultural practices due to climate change and natural resource use is significant in order to understand and manage our environment.

Earthwatch involves matching volunteers from around the world to suitable scientific research projects. They also collaborates with global partners on conservation and management plans, and communicate with scientists about proposed research projects.

Anyone can do their part in preserving our natural environment. Join an expedition today!

Wildlife of the Mongolian Steppe

Explore the lives of unique grassland animals, from lesser kestrels to Siberian ibex, to help conserve their wilderness home

Origins of Ankor

By uncovering Southeast Asia’s past, you’ll learn how agriculture, technology, and changing climates affect civilizations.

For more visit for more expeditions and information or check us out on Facebook !