Spot the cherry laurel – A citizen science survey with children

The children magazine Panewippchen, edited for the members of the Panda-Club of the Luxembourg National Museum of Natural History, has published an interview with Dr Christian Ries, curator of the Department of Ecology:

  • Schaltz, Michèle, 2017. Fuerschung am ‘Natur Musée’: Ekologie. Panewippchen 4: 6-11. [PDF 2.2 MB]

The last page of the article suggests the young readers to participate to a citizen science survey concerning the recent spread into the wild of the cherry laurel (Prunus laurocerasus L.), a common garden plant in Luxembourg, mostly planted to build hedges. Fruits can be dispersed over long distances by birds.

Interested children are asked to look into the forests in their neighbourhood, the evergreen cherry laurel being very easy to spot in winter time, when trees and shrubs rejected their leaves.

The children are asked to send the following basic information to :

  1. How many cherry laurel individuals have been spotted?
  2. Where were they spotted (using GPS of portable devices)
  3. Observers name, age, address and email address.

DNADIVE – New research project on invasive crayfish

See also the project web page at https://faune-flore.lu/dnadive/

DNADIVE aims at developing a molecular toolbox enabling eDNA detection for Invasive crayfish in streams of Luxembourg. This Public2 Partnership project has been accepted by FNR in November 2017 and will start on 1st January 2018. The project will be hosted by Fondation faune-flore and it’s principal investigator will be the French researcher Dr David Porco. Project partnership: Luxembourg National Museum of Natural History (MNHNL), Luxembourg Institute of Science & Technology (LIST), Water management Agency (AGE), Ministry for Sustainable Development and Infrastructure (MDDI), University of Duisburg-Essen (Germany).

Abstract

DNADIVE aims at developing a toolbox for the molecular monitoring of invasive crayfish in the streams of Luxembourg. Three exotic species (Orconectes limosus, Pacifastacus leniusculus and Astacus leptodactylus) and a native one (Astacus astacus) will be targeted for the project.

This molecular toolbox will encompass several techniques of detection comprising (1) a simple amplification method easily performed in a laboratory with few elements, (2) a digital droplet amplification (ddPCR) which is a more elaborated lab method that can allow for a higher detection sensitivity and a possible quantification of DNA that could be related through the proxy of biomass and abundance to the size of the populations detected and (3) an isotherm amplification method (iPCR) i.e. a simple, cost effective approach which will allow for a field detection usable by non-trained agents.

The results will enable the development of a predictive species distribution model for the target species and to infer their impact on freshwater communities through the comparison with previous sampling campaigns. This set of methods has the high potential to efficiently contribute to early detection and routine monitoring of the invasive crayfish species in Luxembourg, thus allowing for a timely and efficient decision-making and appropriate management.

Public conference on the management of Greater Canada goose in Flanders, Belgium

By Tim Adriaens & Frank Huysentruyt, Research Institute for Nature and Forest, Brussels.

In Flanders, Canada goose are causing social, economic and ecological impacts. The population is managed using a combination of methods which requires an adaptive management approach involving multiple actors and stakeholders and monitoring of the population. The lecture will also address the Egyptian goose.

Tim Adriaens is a research associate at the Research Institute for Nature and Forest in Brussels where he co-ordinates invasive species activities throughout the institute. Current invasion biology research topics include, among others, sustainable control of invasive amphibian and feral exotic geese populations, invasive weeds, ruddy duck eradication and monitoring, aquatic invasive species, exotic insects used for biological control.

Frank Huysentruyt is also a research associate at the Research Institute for Nature and Forest and specialised in Wildlife Management and Alien Species.

Tuesday 28 November 2017, 18:30 – 20:00
Musée national d’histoire naturelle
25, rue Münster, L-2160 Luxembourg

Download the Invitation in PDF format

Luxembourg reports Nutria to the EU within the EASIN notification system

On 19th September 2017, a forester captured a Nutria (Myocastor coypus) in Osweiler (commune of Rosport, eastern Luxembourg) and put it to sleep.

This detection of an IAS of Union concern (Anonymous 2016) has been notified by the Luxembourg authorities on 26 September 2017 and an Eradication Measure Set has been submitted as well on 26 September 2017, pursuant to Article 17(1) of R. 1143/2014 (Anonymous 2014).

Biberratte - Nutria - coypu - Myocastor coypus - ragondin - castor des marais - Mönchbruch - December 25th 2012 - 03

Coypu (Myocastor coypus), Moenchbruch lake, Hesse, Germany.
By Norbert Nagel (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

The species was first documented in Luxembourg in 1957 at the Alzette river next to Hunsdorf (Municipality of Lorentzweiler). Currently, it is only observed sporadically in Luxembourg. Because of its occurrence in the bordering regions of France (Chiers, Moselle) and Germany (Saar), it is likely that the species will populate national watercourses within the near future (Becker-Krüll & Schaefer 2013).

Bibliography

  • Anonymous, 2014. Regulation (EU) No 1143/2014 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 22 October 2014 on the prevention and management of the introduction and spread of invasive alien species. Official Journal of the European Union 4.11.2014 L 317: 35-55.
  • Anonymous, 2016. Commission implementing regulation (EU) 2016/1141 of 13 July 2016 adopting a list of invasive alien species of Union concern pursuant to Regulation (EU) No 1143/2014 of the European Parliament and of the Council. Official Journal of the European Union L 189: 4-5.
  • Becker-Krüll, L. & P. Schaefer, 2013. Jagdbare Wildtierarten Luxemburgs. Administration de la nature et des forêts, Luxembourg, 96 pp.