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Author Topic: The Best S.A. Biodiversity Project - The Virtual Museum (Please Support)  (Read 1954 times)

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Offline Shutter_Eye

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I've been part of this venture for a while. The Virtual Museum is a really fantastic project run by the Animal Demography Unit. It's worth supporting, easy to use and it's one of the most valuable projects for conservation in our beautiful country.

Guys, adventure riders travel a lot and it would be really cool if we could get a few dog on board here - we really need as many people as possible to submit as many entries as possible.

Here is a brief overview of what VM is all about (taken off their website):

"The Virtual Museum (VM) provides the platform for citizen scientists to contribute to biodiversity projects. This innovative concept was developed by the Animal Demography Unit. For many people, a ďmuseumĒ is a place to see stuffed animals on display. But the ADUís Virtual Museum is not like this. The scientific part of a museum contains collections of specimens, frequently large numbers of specimens of the same species from different parts of the range, all carefully preserved and labelled with the date and place where they were collected. The ADUís Virtual Museum is like this, except that instead of specimens in draws or bottles, we have digital photographs arranged in a database.

Members of the public are encouraged to submit digital photographs for the Virtual Museums listed below, along with certain basic information. Species identifications can be made by the observers, and are confirmed by a panel of experts. Distribution maps for each species are available online and serve as conservation and education tools. These maps include Virtual Museum records and sometimes also other distributional records which are contained within the ADUís databases.

Virtual Museum records help expand the distribution databases for these taxa; they not only confirm the presence of a species at a particular point in time, but they also provide new distribution records for species and sometimes lead to extensions of the known range of a species."

In a nutshell, whenever you take a photo of an animal you can upload it onto the VM website along with the location and date. This helps us to build accurate species maps so that we can see (E.g.) how wide the range of the Impala is, how it's changed over the years, how commonly it occurs and so on.

Two really important points here are that
(1) the photos do not have to be fancy professional shots - any photo is 100% acceptable as long as the animal can be identified.
(2) it's not essential to identify the animal - if you take a photo of some unknown lizard on the side of the road, upload it, there's an expert panel of scientists who'll gladly ID it for you.

You don't have to be affiliated to the natural sciences at all - this is a project for ANYONE with a passion for nature and a camera who wants to contribute to our understanding of our awesome biodiversity.

You can get more information on the project by visiting the Virtual Museum website --> http://vmus.adu.org.za/ 
You can also visit their facebook page --> www.facebook.com/animal.demography.unit

Feel free to throw any questions you have on here, or you can ask on the facebook page.

It's really easy, fast, doesn't cost a cent and you WILL be making a huge difference. The fact that adventure riders travel so much makes all of you perfect for contributors - the wider we can collect data the better! :thumleft:

P.S. Please bump or sticky! It's a worthy cause. :)
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Offline Veldbrand

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Re: The Best S.A. Biodiversity Project - The Virtual Museum (Please Support)
« Reply #1 on: November 22, 2013, 03:50:29 pm »
Very cool.
I'm sure a bunch of guys will contribute.


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Offline Shutter_Eye

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Re: The Best S.A. Biodiversity Project - The Virtual Museum (Please Support)
« Reply #2 on: November 25, 2013, 10:57:58 am »
Hey everyone - The ADU is quite excited about the potential of having adventure riders contribute.

If you've registered on their site add a post saying so! Let's see how many people we can rally together to support this project. ;D
2 Wheels and 1 Camera...
"UNDERSTEER" is when you hit the fence with your front wheel.
"OVERSTEER" is when you hit the fence with your rear wheel.
"HORSEPOWER" is how fast you hit the fence.
"TORQUE" is how far you take the fence with you.
 

Offline frankmac

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Re: The Best S.A. Biodiversity Project - The Virtual Museum (Please Support)
« Reply #3 on: November 27, 2013, 07:52:50 pm »
Hey everyone - The ADU is quite excited about the potential of having adventure riders contribute.

If you've registered on their site add a post saying so! Let's see how many people we can rally together to support this project. ;D

Good one Shutter Eye. I've posted some photos & details of weaver nests (white-headed & red-billed buffalo weavers) and had a prompt reply from Dieter

 

Offline Shutter_Eye

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Re: The Best S.A. Biodiversity Project - The Virtual Museum (Please Support)
« Reply #4 on: November 27, 2013, 08:00:24 pm »

Good one Shutter Eye. I've posted some photos & details of weaver nests (white-headed & red-billed buffalo weavers) and had a prompt reply from Dieter



Awesome! Thanks. :thumleft:
2 Wheels and 1 Camera...
"UNDERSTEER" is when you hit the fence with your front wheel.
"OVERSTEER" is when you hit the fence with your rear wheel.
"HORSEPOWER" is how fast you hit the fence.
"TORQUE" is how far you take the fence with you.
 

Offline Shutter_Eye

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Re: The Best S.A. Biodiversity Project - The Virtual Museum (Please Support)
« Reply #5 on: December 23, 2013, 10:16:51 am »



"60 000 records have been submitted through the Virtual Museum website - http://vmus.adu.org.za/ - this number excludes bulk uploads, and VM records that arrived by email in the early years, and are only the records that have been submitted via the Virtual Museum data upload tool.

Well done to all the awesome citizen scientists out there that contribute valuable data to the Animal Demography Unit's Virtual Museum projects: MammalMAP, OdonataMAP, ReptileMAP, FrogMAP, LepiMAP, VitH, ScorpionMAP, PHOWN, EchinoMAP, BOP, BirdPix, SpiderMAP --- you are all stars and ambassadors for biodiversity!

The 60 000th record was a bunch of baby ostriches running across the road and into the BirdPix Virtual Museum!! You can view the record here: http://vmus.adu.org.za/?vm=BirdPix-5861

The total number of records in the Virtual Museum database is almost 10 times larger, 586998. This includes all the specimen records of butterflies for the SABCA project (butterfly conservation assessment), of reptiles for SARCA (reptile conservation assessment), and of frogs for SAFAP (frog atlas project), plus the Virtual Museum records that arrive via the "bulk upload" system."

 :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft:
2 Wheels and 1 Camera...
"UNDERSTEER" is when you hit the fence with your front wheel.
"OVERSTEER" is when you hit the fence with your rear wheel.
"HORSEPOWER" is how fast you hit the fence.
"TORQUE" is how far you take the fence with you.
 

Offline Cave Girl

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Re: The Best S.A. Biodiversity Project - The Virtual Museum (Please Support)
« Reply #6 on: December 25, 2013, 08:54:57 pm »
Will remember to take details of times etc next time. Thanks for sharing
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Offline Shutter_Eye

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Re: The Best S.A. Biodiversity Project - The Virtual Museum (Please Support)
« Reply #7 on: December 26, 2013, 12:44:02 pm »
Another option if the process is too time-consuming is upload the photo on this thread along with the location details (and an species identification, if you know what it is) and I'll upload it for you.

(I'll add "Wild Dog Adventure Riding Community" as a tag so that we can show people that bikers are supporting the Animal Demography Unit.

It'll be a good feather in the adventure biking cap. :thumleft:

2 Wheels and 1 Camera...
"UNDERSTEER" is when you hit the fence with your front wheel.
"OVERSTEER" is when you hit the fence with your rear wheel.
"HORSEPOWER" is how fast you hit the fence.
"TORQUE" is how far you take the fence with you.
 

Offline Shutter_Eye

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Re: The Best S.A. Biodiversity Project - The Virtual Museum (Please Support)
« Reply #8 on: January 12, 2014, 09:30:59 am »
Here's a summary of the 2013 highlights from the Animal Demography Unit.



http://www.slideshare.net/meganloftieeaton/virtual-museum-report-2013

Worthwhile - thanks to any dogs that have a hand in this project! :thumleft:
2 Wheels and 1 Camera...
"UNDERSTEER" is when you hit the fence with your front wheel.
"OVERSTEER" is when you hit the fence with your rear wheel.
"HORSEPOWER" is how fast you hit the fence.
"TORQUE" is how far you take the fence with you.
 

Offline dw1

Re: The Best S.A. Biodiversity Project - The Virtual Museum (Please Support)
« Reply #9 on: February 22, 2014, 07:25:42 pm »
Hey everyone - The ADU is quite excited about the potential of having adventure riders contribute.

If you've registered on their site add a post saying so! Let's see how many people we can rally together to support this project. ;D

Just registered. This is a wonderful and very worthwile cause. I'll upload some pics of lizards, spiders and birds as soon as I have my registraiton confirmed
I am slightly dismayed at the muted response so far. I guess its because people have not seen this.

Lets make a huge effort to get more Forum members involved.
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Offline Shutter_Eye

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Re: The Best S.A. Biodiversity Project - The Virtual Museum (Please Support)
« Reply #10 on: February 23, 2014, 10:10:41 am »
Hey everyone - The ADU is quite excited about the potential of having adventure riders contribute.

If you've registered on their site add a post saying so! Let's see how many people we can rally together to support this project. ;D

Just registered. This is a wonderful and very worthwile cause. I'll upload some pics of lizards, spiders and birds as soon as I have my registraiton confirmed
I am slightly dismayed at the muted response so far. I guess its because people have not seen this.

Lets make a huge effort to get more Forum members involved.

Yeah, to be honest I had also hoped for more activity... Maybe someone can make it a sticky. The best part about this project is that anyone with a camera can contribute valuable info.

No scientific background is needed, the ID panel of experts will make sure the photos are correctly identified, there's basically nothing that can go wrong.

Thanks for signing up mate! We especially need photos of reptiles, frogs and insects, they often tend to be overlooked when compared to mammals and birds, so a huge thumbs up for the lizard pics!

Baboon Spiders are probably the field that we need the most info about, because there is such an amazing diversity of species and habitats that we're always in need of demographic entries. :thumleft:
« Last Edit: February 23, 2014, 10:13:36 am by Shutter_Eye »
2 Wheels and 1 Camera...
"UNDERSTEER" is when you hit the fence with your front wheel.
"OVERSTEER" is when you hit the fence with your rear wheel.
"HORSEPOWER" is how fast you hit the fence.
"TORQUE" is how far you take the fence with you.
 

Offline dw1

Re: The Best S.A. Biodiversity Project - The Virtual Museum (Please Support)
« Reply #11 on: February 26, 2014, 10:19:40 pm »
This lovely guy was found just above the water level in our pool December 2012. He was obviously pretty thirsty seeing it was so hot that day.

Location: Just outside Calitzdorp on our farm.

I registered but have not received my password etc. I'll have to email and enquire.  If you could upload in the meantime. Thanks
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Offline Shutter_Eye

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Sorry, this update is a bit behind schedule, I've been too busy.
Dated: 2014-03-03

"We have hit 70000 records submitted to the Virtual Museum projects through the Virtual Museum website at vmus.adu.org.za Ė it is only two months back that we celebrated 60000! This amazing achievement is all thanks to YOU, the awesome ADU contributors and citizen scientists! We value each and every record and we appreciate your support beyond measure! WELL DONE!!!!"
2 Wheels and 1 Camera...
"UNDERSTEER" is when you hit the fence with your front wheel.
"OVERSTEER" is when you hit the fence with your rear wheel.
"HORSEPOWER" is how fast you hit the fence.
"TORQUE" is how far you take the fence with you.
 

Offline Shutter_Eye

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This lovely guy was found just above the water level in our pool December 2012. He was obviously pretty thirsty seeing it was so hot that day.

Location: Just outside Calitzdorp on our farm.

I registered but have not received my password etc. I'll have to email and enquire.  If you could upload in the meantime. Thanks

Did they get back to you yet? I know they've been having some technical issues lately after a major server crash, but they should be up and running by now. 

I'll upload the photo for you if needed, but I'll just need your name and a bit more detailed info on the locality - how far (roughly) out of Calitzdorp and in what direction?
2 Wheels and 1 Camera...
"UNDERSTEER" is when you hit the fence with your front wheel.
"OVERSTEER" is when you hit the fence with your rear wheel.
"HORSEPOWER" is how fast you hit the fence.
"TORQUE" is how far you take the fence with you.
 

Offline dw1

This lovely guy was found just above the water level in our pool December 2012. He was obviously pretty thirsty seeing it was so hot that day.

Location: Just outside Calitzdorp on our farm.

I registered but have not received my password etc. I'll have to email and enquire.  If you could upload in the meantime. Thanks

Did they get back to you yet? I know they've been having some technical issues lately after a major server crash, but they should be up and running by now. 

I'll upload the photo for you if needed, but I'll just need your name and a bit more detailed info on the locality - how far (roughly) out of Calitzdorp and in what direction?

Hi Richard

Just had a message saying they are working on my registration. I did send an email enquiring about it so will give a few more days for them to respond.
If nothing happens I will let you know and we can look at uploading the picture etc. I have quite a few more of those spiders as well as red romans and also some "koggelmanders" All seen on our farm.
 
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Offline Shutter_Eye

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Hi Richard

Just had a message saying they are working on my registration. I did send an email enquiring about it so will give a few more days for them to respond.
If nothing happens I will let you know and we can look at uploading the picture etc. I have quite a few more of those spiders as well as red romans and also some "koggelmanders" All seen on our farm.
 

Cool, the Agama (Koggelmander) photos will be cool, the red romans aren't real spiders, but the spider map is mainly for baboon spiders - some of the baboon spider species are likely to be critically endangered, but because we know so little about their distribution nobody can say for sure. Other spider species entered aren't really used in research much.
2 Wheels and 1 Camera...
"UNDERSTEER" is when you hit the fence with your front wheel.
"OVERSTEER" is when you hit the fence with your rear wheel.
"HORSEPOWER" is how fast you hit the fence.
"TORQUE" is how far you take the fence with you.