Fingers on the Pulse

Tracking the impact of climate change on the health of ecosystems in the Strathbogie Ranges

Building “Healthier Ecosystems’ is the motherhood statement on everyone’s mission and vision documents but how do we monitor current landscape health and track which way is it trending?
Our ‘Fingers on the Pulse’ dashboard aims to collect and share evidence on the direction and speed of environmental change.
This application is for stage 2 of our dashboard project which aims to record changes in our climate and communicate their impacts on the natural environment in real time as a dashboard page on our website.
By developing a dashboard which graphically depicts the key elements of climate change which are effecting the Strathbogie Ranges, we should be able to track the likelihood of problems and flag potential of natural disasters as trigger points and thresholds are reached.

As part of this project we will need to consult with “experts’ to identify ‘tipping points’ for action appropriate for the Strathbogie Ranges. For example hotter than 45 degrees at ground level – kills trees on rocky peaks.
This dashboard could to used a decision making tool for setting environmental priorities.

In Stage 1 key meteorological data sources have been identified and are being displayed in real time on our prototype dashboard but this needs refining into one easily accessible website page
For example; rainfall, groundwater levels, soil moisture, stream flow, water quality, salinity levels, wind speed, temperature and humidity are displayed as dials on our dash board.

In Stage 2 Eco-system health could be measured by expanding or revamping a number of past Strathbogie Ranges CMN projects plus recruiting and training a team of volunteer community scientists. Baseline data has been collected as part of our Bogies & Beyond project 2019
Our aim is to link this existing climatic data to regular surveys of environmental assets, flora and fauna, to give a better indication of the health of local ecosystems.

Project activities:
• Project plan
• Technical support / website maintenance / mapping / communication
• Citizen Science – survey training and data collection

RMIT Media post grad / masters students have been helping to develop a communications strategy for presenting dashboard information to a wider audience. Engaging youth and using a meaningful variety of social media formats to convey our information has been the focus of their recommendations.

This project is funded by GBCMA and the Climate Change Alliance