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Latest news

2014-10-10 Les Underhill 
Awesome new Virtual Museum feature: how to find the gaps in coverage

VM Gap Analysis

This news item explains how to find the gaps in coverage in ADU Virtual Museum projects. On the Virtual Museum website, first choose (from the left hand side menu) the project you are interested in finding the gaps for. Then, from this menu, choose "Maps" and click on the tab "Gap Analysis" and then on "Request summary." A map like the one on the left appears. The grid generates the Quarter Degree Grid Cells. Those with data are coloured. Those without data are blank. Click on the grid cell you are interested in. A Google map like the one on the right appears. This grid cell is 2824DA and covers part of Kimberley, and a section of the Vaal River. It is the basic road map that appears first; I clicked "Satellite" at the top right corner to get this view.

If a grid cell has records, then a species list for the Quarter Degree Grid Cell appears under the map.

This is the Gap Analysis for LacewingMAP. It is little short of astonishing that this new section of the Virtual Museum already has records for 47 Quarter Degree Grid Cells, 2.3% of the region.

This is Version 1 of the ADU Virtual Museum Gap Analysis. It will be extended to cover Africa, and be extended to be able to find the gaps for specific time periods, for example, gaps since 2000.

 
2014-09-17 Les Underhill 
ADU page in African Birdlife, September–October 2014

ADU page in African Birdlife, September-October 2014

This topic was chosen because Citizen Science Week is from 20–28 September. We would be delighted if atlasers atlased irresponsibly.

This page is from the September-October issue of African Birdlife, the magazine of BirdLife South Africa. The pdf of this page is available here.

 
2014-07-18 Dieter Oschadleus 
Weaver nests with long entrance tubes

phown 5189 phown 1028 phown 5320 phown 11499 phown 5338 phown 8416

Several weaver species regularly build nests with long entrance tubes, although some individual nests have shorter tubes:
Baya Weaver phown 7442
Black-throated Weaver
Nelicourvi Weaver
Dark-backed Weaver
Black-necked Weaver
Spectacled Weaver
Gola Malimbe
Cassin's Malimbe
Red-bellied Malimbe
Ibadan Malimbe
Rachel's Malimbe
Red-vented Malimbe
Red-headed Weaver

Often long tubed nests are built by solitary, monogamous weavers. This group of weavers usually consists of a pair and they build the nest together. In some malimbes, a group of birds help build a nest. The long tube probably reduces predation but does not stop some predators. In the polygnous weavers it is usually the male that builds (although the female lines an accepted nest) and males want to build many nests in a breeding season, rather than spending energy on building nests with long tubes.

Thanks to the observers who submitted these records! Please record and submit your record of weaver nests to PHOWN (PHOtos of Weaver Nests) via the Virtual Museum upload site.  

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© Animal Demography Unit 2014
Department of Biological Sciences - University of Cape Town

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