When you are out and about in the wilds of the Flinders Ranges, more often than not you are out of range of mobile network signals. Having a GPS app that works offline means that you can record the location of your discovery, whether it be echidna scats to report to EchidnaCSI or an interesting geological outcrop.
We’ve found a free, simple offline GPS app called My GPS Coordinates. It will give you a GPS reading within seconds no matter where you are. From here you can record your location by either simply taking a screenshot, or emailing yourself the geolocation data via the app.
According to a wave of anecdotal evidence from Beltana, Leigh Creek, Warraweena, Copley and across the district, Echidnas are being sighted in surprising numbers. The number of echidna sightings in the Northern Flinders Ranges is rapidly rising, but not much is known about the populations of these elusive little monotremes in our area. The following information and links come from the Atlas of Living Australia who are hosting the citizen science project Echidna CSI. This exciting project invites you to contribute reports of your echidna sightings – past, present and future!
“Although an iconic native Australian animal, we do not know much about echidnas’ wild populations, as they are extremely hard to find (when you’re actually looking for them). However, we know that there are many of you that have seen wild echidnas (sometimes even in your own backyard!) and taken photos or videos of them. With your help and photo taking abilities we can start filling in the gaps about wild echidnas in Australia.
What we also need help with is collecting echidna scats (which is a nicer way of saying poo). Why? Because we can get a lot of information about echidnas through the molecules in their scats. We can get out DNA and hormones to tell us who that echidna is, if it’s healthy, stressed or reproductively active. And so we can learn more about these wild populations without having to track or capture any of these animals.”
Get Involved! There are a couple of options for submitting data
Millions of birds were spotted in around 70,000 bird counts this year in the Aussie Backyard Bird Count during National Bird Week. To help out backyard ornithologists, a useful Bird Finder page is hosted on the Birds in Backyards site.
Published by the Geological Society of Australia, South Australian Division.
One of the best records in the world of sedimentary deposition in the period of geological time between about 800 million and 500 million years ago is exposed in the Flinders Ranges, Mount Lofty Ranges and the Olary region in South Australia. Sandy and silty sediments derived from erosion of older rocks of the Gawler Craton in the hinterland to the west, and island masses of this basement rock rising from an undersea ridge over 200 km to the east, were deposited into an extensive marine basin called the Adelaide Geosyncline in which the seafloor was slowly subsiding along a series of elongated north-south step or graben faults.
During the 300 million years of continuing but intermittent subsidence of the basin floor, a thick pile of sediment accumulated in the geosyncline. This sequence was then compressed and hardened by deep burial and later folded into a high mountain range by a new regime of earth movements.
First published by The Royal Geographical Society of South Australia Inc. in 1995.
The Flinders Ranges have been shaped by geological processes that, over hundreds of millions of years, have built the stage upon which the drama of biological interactions is being performed.
The Flinders Ranges form part of a highland chain extending from Kangaroo Island in the south through the Mount Lofty Ranges and Flinders Ranges to Marree and beyond in the north, to Olary in the east, and to Spencer Gulf and Lake Torrens in the west. Like many other mountain chains, they began their history as a subsiding sedimentary basin.
During the late Precambrian era, the Earth’s crust in South Australia consisted of granitic, metamorphic, sedimentary and volcanic rocks formed between 2600 and 1400 million years ago. In the present Flinders, the only rocks from that time are exposed near Arkaroola, including what are now known as the Freeling Heights Quartzite, Terrapinna Granite (Terrapinna Tors Walk) and Mt Neill Granite. Rocks that now constitute the eastern states of Australia were yet to form and the ancestral Pacific Ocean may have had its shores in South Australia. To the south, Australia was still joined to Antarctica.
The main area in South Australia then lay west of an approximate line from Adelaide to Oodnadatta; a smaller one existed in the vicinity of Lake Frome. The intervening area, where the Flinders and Mount Lofty Ranges now stand, became a long-lived basin known as the Adelaide Geosyncline, in which sediments accumulated 800 to 500 million years ago.