Natalie Briscoe and colleagues were part of a team that has been investigating whether we can improve the functional performance of nest boxes. They wondered
what difference surface reflectance would have on the temperature inside nest boxes if the outsides of the boxes were painted in different colours.
The team tested three different coloured nest boxes (white, light-green, and dark-green) to see if the colour of the nest boxes had an effect on the internal temperature they maintain.
Their study found that light coloured boxes were the best at reflecting heat during summer and dark coloured boxes asborbed heat well in winter. Other factors including box design, placement, and the amount of shade boxes received also influenced the internal temperature of the nest boxes.
These conclusions have important implications for the use of nest boxes as a conservation tool. Conservation managers considering the implementation of nest boxes programs need to give careful consideration to design, colour, placement and shade profile of nest boxes.
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Top image: Whose house is cooler? Turns out it’s the light green nest boxes on the tree on the right (in this case, boxes for bats). Which probably means light green is better in the summer but the warmer dark green boxes might be more suitable in winter. Photo: Steve Griffiths
Clare is a Biodiversity Field Officer with the Australian National University’s Sustainable Farms project. She tells us how she came to this role after an early life on farms in the UK, some bullet-dodging and globe-trotting.
The box gum grassy woodlands once stretched across south-eastern Australia, but have been reduced to less than 5% of their former extent. Holly Vuong speaks with Ann Kristin Raymer and Heather Keith of The Australian National University (ANU) about their new research, part of ANU’s Sustainable Farms, on developing ecosystem accounts for the woodlands to understand why this threatened ecological community is so valuable.
To help land managers get the best outcomes from their fox control investments, a collaborative project funded by the Threatened Species Recovery Hub and Victorian government agencies has developed a new fox population modelling tool. Dr Bronwyn Hradsky of The University of Melbourne led the project and is now working with agencies to apply the tool across Victoria. Here we discuss FoxNet and its applications.
An interview with Braedan Taylor, Karajarri Head Ranger, Karajarri Indigenous Protected Area and Karajarri Rangers
An interview with Kanyirninpa Jukurrpa and Martu people