BioBlitz at Hallett Cove Beach

Hallett Cove has a diverse range of environments to discover. At our BioBlitz we ran activities in the water, along the shoreline, and into Hallett Cove Conservation Park. Scientists, naturalists and the public worked together to observe and record biodiversity.

Around 450 people participated in the Hallett Cove BioBlitz on November 13 and 14, 2015. Over the two days, the public participated in biological survey activities, including:

  • Marine life – SCUBA and snorkeling surveys
  • Intertidal life – searching the rock pools at low tide
  • Birds – surveys for coastal and terrestrial birds
  • Mammals – spotlighting at night
  • Bats – recording their echolocation with an AnaBat device
  • Insects – attracting them to a light trap
  • Dune plants – recording the local flora
  • Reptiles – looking for lizards in the dunes

On Friday November 13, five local school classes attended, participating in science, art and nature-discovery activities. Other activities for the public included a talk about the Aboriginal Night Sky (Paul Curnow from the Adelaide Planetarium), a ‘Caring for our Coast’ presentation (Marine Discovery Centre), and wildlife displays by Animals Anonymous and Bugs n Slugs.

What did we find?

We are still collating and checking the observations that were made at the Hallett Cove BioBlitz. We have hundreds of observations to work through. As we go, we are entering them into iNaturalist, an online repository of biological records. You can see the records online (click on the image below).

Click here to see the survey observations from the Hallett Cove BioBlitz

Interesting finds included two invasive species that have been reported to biosecurity:

  1. A European fan worm (Sabella spallanzanii): these animals colonise jetties and reefs and compete with native species for food and habitat.
  2. A European shore crab (Carcinus maenas): these are particularly uncommon along the Adelaide shorelines, but could be increasing in numbers. These crabs predate on native bivalve molluscs and can carry parasites that impact local bird species.

A big thank you to everyone involved – it was great to see the public working with scientists, naturalists, and educators from the University of South Australia; South Australian Museum; Reef Watch (Conservation Council SA); Friends of Hallett Cove Conservation ParkDepartment of Environment, Water and Natural Resources;  Natural Resources Adelaide and Mt Lofty Ranges; NRM Education; Flinders UniversityUniversity of Adelaide; Adelaide PlanetariumButterfly Conservation SABirds SA; Marine Discovery Centre; Animals AnonymousBugs n Slugs; and Indelible Duck.

Thanks also to the City of Marion for their support and involvement, and to the Boatshed Café... a wonderful venue for a BioBlitz!

Some of the amazing sub-tidal life found during the BioBlitz:
the sub-tidal ‘erratic‘ rocks create habitat for fishes
(video courtesy of Carl Charter/Reef Watch)

More BioBlitz events?

We are planning more BioBlitz events. There is one at St Kilda on the 27th and 28th of November, 2015 (click here). To make sure you don’t miss out on any of our projects and events,  sign up for our e-newsletter (click here).

Questions?

Email us at discoverycircle@unisa.edu.au, or phone 8302 9999.

Useful links about Hallett Cove:

This BioBlitz event was supported by…

University of South Australia South Australian Museum
Reef Watch (Conservation Council SA) Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources Natural Resources Adelaide and Mt Lofty Ranges