TLC full of bright ideas in National Science Week

The Tasmanian Land Conservancy (TLC) was delighted to be part of the first Festival of Bright Ideas as part of National Science Week.

The inaugural Festival of Bright Ideas set out to showcase Tasmania’s innovative and exciting science sector so naturally, the TLC played a part in this premier community science event.

‘Schools day’ saw over 1400 Tasmanian students experience science with all its wow and wonder. TLC Conservation Scientist Matt Taylor presented on the science of listening, explaining to school students how the simple act of listening to nature can help identify many different species of animals around us in the natural environment. At the TLC we use sound recorders to monitor the birds and other animals in our nature reserves. Next time you are outside try it for yourself and see how many different sounds you can hear, you might be surprised at how many you pick up!

The practice of science doesn’t need to be highly technical; observations using simple methods that don’t require specialised training can be used to answer important questions about how we manage our environment. The TLC hosted a hands-on activity in which students were challenged to interpret our remote sensor monitoring photographs of Tasmania’s flora, fauna and landscapes from the Vale of Belvoir Reserve. Students, teachers and parents were encouraged to closely examine the images, identify animals and think about how land is managed for conservation. The activity also helped participants identify and learn about the native and introduced species found on our reserves.

Saturday’s public event was a great opportunity for the community to find out more about the work of the TLC and how they can contribute to its management. Science is central to the TLC’s conservation efforts, with image and sound recordings just some of the methods we use to maintain and help our reserves flourish. We loved being able to showcase some of the different ways we use science to continue our work in maintaining and helping our reserves flourish and the festival was a great opportunity to engage with the local science community. We succeeded in raising both awaerness and funds for our critical conservation work.

Did you miss the event? Would you like to learn more about being a citizen scientist? If you would like to help the TLC in activities like our remote camera monitoring, register to become a volunteer.

Find out more about National Science Week here and check out our live behind the scenes tweets of the festival on our Twitter page.

By Felicity Dawes Felicity is a University of Tasmania student in Journalism, Media and Communications on placement with the TLC throughout July and August