Tag Archive for: ABOL-BioBlitz

This year’s ABOL BioBlitz series was completed with the Day of Biodiversity in the Hohe Tauern National Park on the Deferegger sunny side in East Tyrol. As in previous years, the weather this weekend was rather bad. At least this year we had some sunny windows in which flying insects, especially bumblebees, hoverflies and butterflies could be observed. The first evening was already dedicated to the light traps – nocturnal insects were attracted and mapped with light traps on the banks of the Schwarzach river and in the alpine area at Speikboden. Saturday was devoted entirely to searching for species in the study areas above St. Veit and St. Jakob, up to high alpine locations. In the evening, nets for catching bats were set up around the House of Water of the National Park, which served as a base, with which, together with echolocation, 5 species of bats could be detected. At the final event on Sunday, the first results and provisional species numbers were presented. Thanks to the voluntary and unpaid work of around 70 experts, the data situation in this area, which had been rather sparse until then, was significantly improved. We hope to get some more samples for the creation of DNA barcodes and to successfully complete the ABOL-BioBlitz collecting season.
We would like to thank the national park team for the perfect organization of accommodation, food and transport!

Impressions from the study area:

 

 

TdA Nockberge - Bärengrube. Photo: O. Macek

On July 7 and 8, the ABOL team was present at two simultaneous events: the Day of Biodiversity in Tyrol and the GEO-Day of Nature in Carinthia.

At the Day of Biodiversity in Tyrol, in Leutasch, four very different and exciting study areas were examined for their biodiversity. In a moor area with orchid-rich fens and an intact mountain pine high moor, night was turned into day with numerous light traps – at least for the nocturnal insects and their researchers. In addition, many fireflies, which are rarely observed in such high numbers today, lit our way. The numerous butterfly experts were also present high on the mountain in the direction of Arnkopf, at a species-rich meadow and an interesting gravel area. The beautiful weather on Saturday contributed to rich observations of various animal groups. The final event on Saturday afternoon was well attended and very informative and interesting with a very well-prepared photo presentation which was put together in a very short time. Experts from various fields contributed briefly, from the geology of the study area, a short introduction to iNaturalist to a poem about a moth (Baptria tibiale).

First results were presented, there was a lot to find on the four survey plots: 11 orchid species, about 200 different butterflies, including the rare dusky large blue (Phengaris nausithous), more than 50 bird species, including black grouse, golden eagle and tawny owl, some recordings on the bat-detector and sundew and moorland hawker in the moorland. As part of the post-processing, some more exciting species will surely be added to the species list. Also, the culinary art and the interaction among the experts wasn’t missed out, before we started the long journey home, which was definitively worth it! Many thanks to the organizing team!

The other part of the ABOL team took part in the GEO Day of Nature in the Nockberge. With the ‘Bärengrube’ (translated ‘bear-cave’) near Innerkrems we went this year to north-exposed sites of the biosphere reserve, with a diverse geology and soils, from dolomite to mica schist and numerous boggy areas. Not in every organism group the call for ‘bear’ associations could be served as elegantly as the botanical Lycopodium, a pun that loses its punch line in English. Not even the butterfly experts were successful due to the lack of Arctiinae sightings. The familiar atmosphere and the perfect weather led to the fact that nevertheless nobody was grieved. Moreover, the sightings of all three grouse species consoled even the melancholic about the absence of species like Contarinia baeri.

Our thanks go again to the organizers of E.C.O., the biosphere reserve team and the Ökoteam for the perfect organization and for opening the wide field of bear puns.

Impressions from Leutasch in Tyrol:

Impressions from the Nockberge:

This year ABOL participated for the second time in the ÖEG insect camp with a BioBlitz. This year the four-day camp took place in the picturesque scenery of the Salzburger Kalkhochalpen of the Naturepark Weißbach and led us to species-rich mountain meadows, forest edges, swamp meadows up to alpine lawns.

Before starting into the field, the variety of different fields of expertise became apparent in the form of the stored equipment: Leaf vacuums for bugs, cicadas and various hymenoptera, beetle traps, luminous traps for moths and other nocturnal animals, hoverfly-, wild bee-, butterfly- & dragonfly-nets, sieves for millipedes, mosquito traps and much more. All framed by identification literature, binoculars, taxidermy utensils and a wide variety of collecting tubes.

In a short ABOL-presentation, the relevance of an Austria-wide DNA reference database and DNA-based identification approaches were presented. Interested participants could pick up tubes prepared by the ABOL team to barcode their collected animals. A Malaise trap for a metabarcoding approach was also set up again.

The days were very suitable for professional exchange and a common barbecue with an enjoyable evening in the naturepark rounded off the program wonderfully.

It can be said that the goal of the ÖEG, the promotion, documentation and representation of scientific entomology in Austria, was fully achieved during the four days. A big thank-you to the youth referent of the ÖEG Elisabeth Huber and the team of the Naturepark Weißbach, the schedule was flawless! Thank you very much for having us!

Impressions:

The first two Days of Biodiversity took this year place in Vienna (allotment Villaweg) and Lower Austria (Klosterneuburg, Biosphere Reserve Wienerwald).

In Klosterneuburg, we were exploring species-rich meadows, natural Wienerwald brooks, or the biosphere reserve core zone “Dombachgraben” in fantastic early summer weather. In Vienna, too, the weather left nothing to be desired – only the floodlights of the nearby soccer field competed in the evening with the insect light traps and bat catching, including a night tour. Nevertheless, a Viennese peacock moth (Saturnia pyri) could be observed at a light trap, a highlight for everyone!

While in Vienna all sites in and around the Villaweg allotment were easily accessible on foot, the area in Klosterneuburg, on the northern edge of the Biosphere Reserve Wienerwald, extended over several square kilometers and a shuttle service was provided. The species search started on Friday morning and ended on Saturday noon in a festival of biodiversity with information booths and expert excursions!

Even though DNA barcoding may appear to be a more complex topic at first glance, our ABOL information booth was well visited and we could inform visitors about the different activities of ABOL as well as win experts for the ABOL BioBlitz! At this point we would like to thank the organizers for the great organization!

Impressions:

 

Hochstaudenflur, Kölnbreinsperre, TdA Hohe Tauern. Foto: M. Sonnleitner

Once again this year, the Biodiversity Day in the National Park Hohe Tauern was not accompanied by good weather. With gusts of wind, cold, rain and occasional windows of sunshine, dedicated experts collected biodiversity data again last weekend – this year in the Carinthian part of the National Park in the Maltatal. The high altitudes around the Kölnbrein reservoir were investigated, but also the lower altitudes of the municipality of Malta, lighth traps were set up and bats were mapped with nets and batcorders. Due to the adverse conditions, diurnal insects were mainly collected in the short sunny windows, especially on the last day. The ABOL coordination team was there in full force and, as in previous years, will submit samples for DNA barcoding as part of an ABOL BioBlitz. We would like to thank everyone who took part! Furthermore, we thank the National Park team for the excellent organisation and support!
Congratulations on the Hohe Tauern Biodiversity Report, which was presented at the final meeting (-> download here).

Report from the Organizer (in GERMAN only): -> here

Impressions from the study area:

Geo-Tag Nockberge 2022; St. Lorenzen at Reichenau. Photo: C. Leeb

This year’s GEO Nature Day in the Nockberge Biosphere Reserve was dedicated to wet habitats around St. Lorenzen ob Reichenau. Consequently, there was also some moisture from above on the first day – the herpetologists thanked them with proof of the complete amphibian inventory, with alpine salamander, alpine newt, common toad and common frog. On Saturday, when the weather was beautiful, we went to the peat bog of St Lorenzen, among other sites. Designated as Ramsar protection area in 2011, dragonfly species were also found here for the first time during the Geo-day in the Nockberge. Although the moor, with a high proportion of rarities, is considered a relatively species-poor habitat, thanks to the many experts, around 1000 species were again recorded this year.

The Carinthia University of Applied Sciences used various types of traps, which, for the first time for the GEO Nature Day, are to be analyzed using DNA barcoding. In addition, environmental samples were taken to test an eDNA approach, which is likely to significantly increase the number of species detected.

A great thanks to the organizers and all participants in the ABOL BioBlitz!

A few impressions from the study area:

The long journey was worth it: on July 8th and 9th the Day of Biodiversity, including a ABOL-BioBlitz, took place in the Ehrwald Basin/Biberwier, in the Ausserfern region of Tyrol. In the large valley basin, framed by the Wetterstein Mountains and the striking Zugspitze massif, the local bird sanctuary with the remains of a former extensive moor landscape was collected and mapped for 24 hours by experts from various groups of organisms. Further study areas were the picturesque Weißensee, a moist, steep southern slope and other smaller areas. The sunny weather contributed to the fact that plenty of flying insects could also be recorded. We hope for numerous samples from the participants, from which ABOL will have DNA barcodes created, and thank you very much in advance for your commitment. We would also like to thank the organizers for allowing ABOL to take part once again, as well as for the excellent catering and organization!

A few impressions from the study area:

One goal of ABOL is to promote taxonomic knowledge. What could be more obvious than participate in the ÖEG insect camp. For this reason, a BioBlitze took place for the first time this year apart from days of biodiversity. The four-day camp was from 23.6. until 26.6. in the Nature Reserve Leiser Berge in Lower Austria. More than 40 entomologists – both experts and motivated students – took part. Arthropod groups such as beetles, butterflies, hymenoptera, bugs, cicadas, but also spiders and millipedes were collected. In addition to nets, exhausters, leaf suckers and soil sieves, a wide variety of light traps were used during the night. The evenings were also used to determine and to be together comfortably. As a finale, there was a big barbecue together on the last evening.

In addition to morphological identification, the participants were also introduced to DNA-based identification approaches. Interest in DNA barcoding was high among young entomologists. In this ABOL BioBlitz, a malaise trap was set up for the first time in order to expand the species list using metabarcoding.

The Leiser Berge were extraordinarily rich in insect species and abundances. The weather conditions were ideal, especially for flying insects. We are eagerly awaiting the evaluations and re-determinations of the entomologists, as well as the results of the DNA samples.

We would like to say a big thank you for the great organization and excellent catering – especially to Elisabeth Huber from ÖEG, the team from the Nature Reserve Leiser Berge and the team from the Youth Center Oberleis! Thanks also go to all participants and those interested in the ABOL-BioBlitz. It was a great pleasure for us to be able to participate in the insect camp this year!

This year, the Biosphere Reserve Wienerwald once again organized a day of biodiversity – on June 10th and 11th – this time in the 16th district of Vienna, Ottakring, with some sites in the 14th district, Penzing. ABOL participated again with a BioBlitz campaign. After a break of several years due to the pandemic, a “Festival of Biodiversity” was celebrated again, with a program for the public, especially for families.
Approximately 80 experts for various groups of animals, fungi and plants took part in this year’s day of biodiversity and tried to detect as many species as possible in the area over the two days. Despite the bad weather on Friday, almost 900 species were recorded over the two days. Some of the species found will be genetically sampled after processing and identification by the experts in the course of the ABOL-BioBlitz and DNA barcodes will be generated, which will ultimately be found as reference data in BOLD (Barcode of Life Database).
The public part began on Friday evening with exciting night tours, where bats and other animals were observed; the Saturday afternoon then offered a varied program with excursions, information stands, a handicraft corner, a micro-theater and culinary delights from the region. ABOL was also represented with an information stand where interested people were informed about the DNA barcoding procedure. So-called biodiversity talks were also held for the first time this year, at which experts discussed hot topics such as the extinction of species and the tension between agriculture and biodiversity.
We would like to thank all participants in the ABOL-BioBlitz and the Biosphärenpark team for the great organization and catering!

Dear ABOL community

We are pleased to announce that our first joint publication on the ABOL BioBlitzes has been published in Acta ZooBot (link). In this context, the DNA barcoding datasets from the BioBlitzes 2019 and 2020 were released in BOLD, the international DNA barcoding platform, and are now available to everyone (download: dx.doi.org/10.5883/DS-ABOLBB19).

The concept of the ABOL BioBlitz combines the Days of Biodiversity with the generation of DNA barcode references from animals, especially insects, which are collected there anyway and identified by experts. In this way we make a significant contribution to the data basis for Austrian biodiversity, but above all valuable and often rarely available taxonomic expertise is digitized by storing the taxonomic determination together with the DNA sequence in a publicly accessible database.
Therefore, we would like to thank the experts who contributed their samples and expertise for their participation in the BioBlitzes and the unpaid efforts, and of course everyone who worked on the manuscript!

With your help, the BioBlitzes become a model example of citizen participation in social goals.

At the same time, we would like to motivate the experts to take part in the ABOL-BioBlitzes 2022 again. Information about this is available here: https://www.abol.ac.at/en/abol-bioblitz-2022/

 

Publication – Citation and Download:

Sonnleitner, M., Schoder, S., Macek, O., Leeb, C., Bräuchler, C., Haring, E., Dötterl, S., Eckelt, A., Fauster, R., Glatzhofer, E., Graf, W., Gros, P., Heimburg, H., Heiss, E., Hinterstoisser, W., Kirchweger, S., Koblmüller, S., Komposch, C., Link, A., Rabl, D., Rupp, T., Schlager, M., Streinzer, M., Strutzberg, H., Timaeus, L., Wagner, H.C., Wiesmair, B., Zimmermann, D., & Szucsich, N.U. (2022). Beitrag der ABOL-BioBlitze zur österreichischen Biodiversitäts-Erfassung: DNA-Barcodes aus 2019 und 2020Acta ZooBot Austria158, 81–95. CITE DOWNLOAD