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.
For further information:
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
With other concerned conservation biologists, researchers from the Threatened Species Recovery Hub have developed a ‘blueprint’ for management responses to the 2019-20 wildfires. This report can be downloaded from our website.
The Threatened Species Recovery Hub of the National Environmental Science Program expresses our sympathy to everyone whose life has been impacted by these horrific fires, and acknowledges the heartbreak of families who have lost everything, including loved ones.
Many landscapes in Australia are fire-prone, and increasingly so. Altered fire regimes can have a serious negative impact on threatened plant species and ecological communities. A Threatened Species Recovery Hub project is working to better understand the effects of different fire regimes on threatened flora in order to improve fire management strategies and conservation outcomes.
Almost a quarter of Australia’s possums and gliders are listed as threatened under Australian environmental law, and many more are showing signs of decline. Dr Rochelle Steven from The University of Queensland believes people in the community can do a lot to support conservation, especially in urban areas.
The detection and monitoring of threatened species have been a strong area of research in the National Environmental Science Program and also the two national environmental research programs which preceded it. Hub Director Professor Brendan Wintle takes a look at what we’ve been achieving and why it is so important to the conservation of Australia’s threatened species.