Marine Species Identification Portal

Marine Species Identification Portal – a simple site with a powerful aim – to help identify marine species. The site is said to have thousands listed. To find out more about how this works – see here.

Ecological Methods 4e

Rating: PA Henderson and TRE Southwood. 2016. Ecological Methods 4e. Wiley. ISBN 978 1 118 89528 3 There are some books which go into numerous editions that are easy to review, in that new material can alter the focus of the text. Then there’s the classic text, such as the one reviewed here, where the content is so well known that it is almost enough to just give the name and hit ‘publish’! This is the fourth edition of the […]

Council for Learning Outside the Classroom

Council for Learning Outside the Classroom – now that there are an increasing number of revised curricula that require students to learn outside the classroom, this organisation has sprung up to help.   From their website: ” Incorporated in December 2008, the Council for Learning Outside the Classroom formally assumed responsibility and leadership for learning outside the classroom from the [then] Department for Children, Schools and Families (DCSF) on the 1st April 2009. The premise of LOtC has been supported […]

Dirty Teaching

Rating: Juliet Robertson. 2014. Dirty Teaching: a beginner’s guide to learning outdoors. Independent Thinking Press. ISBN 978 178135107 9. Up to now, there’s been an increasingly alarming move towards taking the field out of fieldwork and replacing it with a computer screen. Let’s be very clear on this – fieldwork cannot be replaced by any software. You cannot get the same feeling standing in an ecosystem as you can seeing a video (however good). There’s an increasing body of research […]

The Rise of the Science Citizen

“Citizen science is creating excitement throughout the ecological world” Serendipity strikes again! Just as I was completing some work for students on systems models so an email arrives inviting me to participate in a programme of “lagoon” (read freshwater areas, this is Australia!) studies. The proponents (a local university research team) want to investigate how people interact with nature. That was easy to complete, so we are going along in a few weeks time. Returning home I get the latest […]

And you say it’s what?

Over the years, one of the most crucial but difficult skills has been species identification. OK, difficult for me but I’m guessing , possibly, others! It might be because I came to ecology via earth sciences (rocks and fossils no issue, living material, more difficult!).  Looking through the BES bulletins, I found a common thread. How do we accurately identify species in the field and, probably as an adjunct, but I’d argue needs a higher profile, how do we support  […]

Geomorphic Analysis of River Systems

Rating: Kirstie A Fryirs and Gary J Brierley. 2013. Geomorphic Analysis of River Systems. Wiley-Blackwell. ISBN 978 1 4501 9274 3 Most books on rivers deal with just that. Not surprising really and we could say the same about any other aspect of the biotic or abiotic environment. However, there is a point here. By focussing on the river, you tend not to connect it to the landscape. This is not a problem for the professional geomorphologist because they know […]

Engaging Places

Engaging Places is a site that aims to integrate learning with the outdoors and specifically the built environment. It’s focussed on a cross-disciplinary perspective but should offer a starting point for both science and geography (as well as environmental issues).

Atlas of Living Australia

Atlas of Living Australia is a detailed an multi-disciplinary site which is the local node of the Global Biodiversity Information Facility. Its aim is to act as a collator of information from a range of organisations so that the complexity of Australian flora and fauna can be more easily accessed. In practice, this is a very ambitious project.  Leaving aside the traditional information such as species and species maps, this site has open source software to collect field data, a […]

Reconstructing Earth’s Climate History

Rating: Kristen St John, R Mark Leckie, Kate Pound, Megan Jones and Lawrence Krissek. 2012. Reconstructing Earth’s Climate History. Wiley-Blackwell. ISBN 978 1 1182 3294 1 Over the years there have been hundreds (probably thousands!) of books published on just about every topic in the climate change canon. Rarely, there’s a book that looks at something from a completely new angle. One of the issues that has surrounded climate change from the beginning is that it often assumes that the […]