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EchidnaCSI Update

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We've got lots in store for 2019...

Welcome to the first EchidnaCSI newsletter for 2019! Last year was huge. We got to watch our little project grow into something fantastic, all thanks to the help of our wonderful users. Read  more below for details on where the project is at. 
We are very excited for the year to come - now that we have amassed some data, we can begin to analyse it. Keep your eyes peeled for exciting results throughout the year!
 
Read on to find out more.

Update on where we are at currently

EchidnaCSI's 5000th submission!
Before getting into our exciting plans for 2019, we thought we would document where we are at the start of the year.

We are excited to announce that we have recently received our 5000th submission! We are thrilled to have such terrific engagement in our project. To date, we have also had:
  • Over 4500 photo sightings
  • Over 300 scat sightings
  • almost 100 submissions indicating evidence of an echidna (these include sightings of diggings and photo-less sightings)
  • over 6000 subscribers from the app
Thanks to everyone who has made a submission to EchidnaCSI. We couldn't be where we are today without you! 

What's in store for 2019


Thanks to the data that you have submitted over the past nineteen months, EchidnaCSI now has a lot of information to analyse. 

Echidna distribution:
Through EchidnaCSI we have more sightings of echidnas collected in a single year than has been collected over the past ten years by more conventional methods - this is extremely exciting! We are now in the process of analysing this data to find out more about echidnas' habitat preferences and distribution patterns. We will also be looking into what the most dangerous roads are for echidna roadkill and how we can better protect them.

Diet and gut health:
With the abundance of echidna scats being sent through, we are looking at the DNA within the scats to identify what insects echidnas are eating and how healthy their gut microbiome is. DNA has been extracted from many of the scats already and we expect data to be available within the next couple of months!


Survey:
We also want to learn more about you! In the coming months, we will be releasing a survey to learn more about how and why users engage in EchidnaCSI to help us understand the impact EchidnaCSI has had on the Australian community and inform us on what changes we can make to the project in the future. We hope to get as many responses as possible, so keep an eye out for future emails.
 
Be sure to read our newsletters and like us on Facebook for updates on our research throughout the year.

 

We recently launched new social media campaigns on Twitter and Instagram. Be sure to give us a follow @echidna_csi to see cute echidna photos, interesting echidna facts, project info and so much more! 
 

USA Citizen Science Conference

Tahlia is off to the US to attend their Citizen Science conference! An exciting opportunity to share EchidnaCSI overseas and meet with leaders in the field of citizen science. Tahlia secured a talk for the conference highlighting how EchidnaCSI has successfully incorporated sample collection into a citizen science project. You can follow Tahlia's journey on twitter by following her @tahliajperry and following the conference @CitSciAssoc or #CitSci2019

We wish Tahlia all the best and look forward to sharing conference highlights once she returns.

Photo of the month

Thanks to David from NSW for sending in this adorable photo of a puggle! It was found with its mum, who was busy digging a burrow for the two of them. 

All the best,
-EchidnaCSI

 
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