THANK YOU citizen scientist! Our "Orchids, Soil & Disturbance" event was a success. 

National science week 2015 with Murdoch Branch, Friends of Forrestdale and Microblitz was a fun day and our story was published in The Urban Bush Telegraph, November 2015 edition. Fifteen enthusiasts of citizen science came on 16th of August 2015 to Anstey Keane Bush Forever Site (number 342) to participate in the research on how disturbance affects soil quality and plant diversity. The event was carried out in the form of a bushland hike, led by the president of Murdoch Branch. Participants were assigned to five teams. Each team collected one soil subsample from three different locations: 1. Invasive plants only, 2. Invasive and natives, 3. Orchids and natives only.

The soil analysis will test the content of Nitrogen, Phosphorus and heavy metals: Cadmium, Molybdenum, Cobalt, Selenium, Lead, Chromium and Arsenic in the soil and we will also have an access to data on soil microbes from Microblitz Team. The findings are already available online at Data .

 While  walking with experienced naturalists from: Wildflower Society, Friends of Forrestdale Lake & Weed Society of WA we have learnt heaps about the local flora and fauna. Now time to do analysis :)

Where we started
: Junction of Anstey & Keane Road, Forrestdale Lake, WA.

When it happened: 16 August 2015 at 11 am (ending around 4 pm)

RSVP used: FORM (10 seconds.)

App used: INaturalist - See the records on Anstey/Keane Bushland Project.

Event's Facebook Page: Click  Event Page to see more photos & LIKE Wildflower Society of WA Murdoch Branch :)

Details of "Orchids, Soil & Disturbance" Citizen Project:

Anstey-Keane Bush Forever Site is a jewel in the Perth Metropolitan area with an amazing range of plant and bird species. Unfortunately, as all urban bushlands Anstey-Keane bush site is exposed to a range of disturbance factors related to the  ongoing urbanization. The “Orchid, Soil & Disturbance” (funded by National Science Week Coordinating Committee in WA) is an event designed to bring all interested individuals to undertake a public research on environmental issues in peri-urban areas. The main focus will be at how disturbance factors affect soil properties and in turn how soil properties affect the changes in the ecosystem above ground. You will be part of the citizen science team that will be collecting soil samples in three different locations: 

1. At the orchid or other native flowering plant location in undisturbed area (native only).

2. At the moderately disturbed area (native and invasive).

3. At the verge of the bushland, intensively disturbed location (invasive only).

The soil sampling sites will be photographed and recorded using GPS devices via INaturalist app on your smartphone. Subsequently, all soil samples will be sent to the CSBP soil laboratory and t
ested for the content of  Nitrogen, Phosphorus and heavy metals: Cadmium, Molybdenum, Cobalt, Selenium, Lead, Chromium and Arsenic in the soil. T
he Microblitz kits are going to be an exciting addition to our project  that will help us to reveal the hidden bio-diversity of the soil beneath our feet too.

We will be collecting soil samples across the entire site (~370 ha). We will use the soil chemistry data to assess how soil disturbance level and site proximity to urban verges affect the soil quality and plant composition. The DATA will be published on this site and jointly analyzed. Feel free to email any questions to: p.waryszak@murdoch.edu.au