Virunga Massif (04.01.2016 to 06.30.2016)

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Year: 
2016
Quarter: 
April - June
Communications activities: 

No communication activites were undertaken during this quarter.

Unusual Events at the TEAM Site: 

No unusual event took place at the site.

New Species: 

No new species was found

Protocol Activities: 

1.     Climate Monitoring Protocol

Climate data for April, May and June were downloaded and the climate station was serviced.

2.     Terrestrial Vertebrate (camera trap) Monitoring Protocol

In Mid-June, we started the camera trap deployment as part of 2016 sampling period.  By the end of June, all 30 camera traps were already deployed as part of the first camera trap array deployment.

3. Vegetation Monitoring Protocol

During this quarter, we managed to identify and work with a professional botanist to help to identify a few species that we were unable to identify in the 2015 and 2016 sampling periods. The work consisted of indoor species identification using specimens that were already collected. In this session, almost all species already identified were confirmed. The second and third day were used to conduct field visits to plots which had species that we were uncertain of their identification and those we were not able to identify. By the end of the field visits, all species were identified and confirmed.

Protocol Problems: 

i)                Climate station

There is a persisting technical issue with the climate station since January. The data logger failed to communicate with the memory card. We tried our best to fix this but we failed. For downloading data, we connect the computer to the climate station and download data directly from the data logger. Any assistance will be helpful to troubleshoot this issue.

ii)              Camera traps

No problem was encountered.

iii)             Vegetation plots

No problem was encountered.

Schedule Problems: 

No schedule problem was encountered

Logistical Problems: 

No logistical problem was encountered during the reporting period

Suggestions: 

So far, a considerable amount of data have been collected and stored. Some trends have been observed and raised some questions regarding species distributions and the implications to park management. It would be helpful if we can get trained in data analysis to produce reports that show trends and can support the park management. We recommend that CI or WCS support us by providing trainings in camera trap data analysis to allow us to analyze available datasets and respond to those ecological questions.