Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Celebrating 20,000 observations in 8 months since launch

It's time to get the sausage rolls out of the oven and the champagne out of the fridge. NatureWatch NZ just surged past its 20,000th observation added since it launched on 27 August 2012. It seems like just over a couple of months ago that NatureWatch past our 10,000 observation milestone. Oh wait. It was!

Our 20,000th observation was of an as yet unidentified spider in a web on a barberry, the 47th observation added by Charles Fryett.

Our online community is growing strongly with those 20,000 observations coming from 399 observers (almost twice the number of people who added the first 10,000). They have added observations of an impressive 3,553 taxa (taxa includes species and higher taxa like genus and family when a species has not been identified). NatureWatch NZ now contains 22,324 photos, attached to 15,013 observations. We're fast becoming an online treasure chest of NZ biodiversity observations, including more of the first photos of some species ever added to the internet (as found with Google searches).

NatureWatch NZ is now a vibrant online community for identifying and discussing New Zealand natural history. And it's not just people observing and commenting on observations. In the past month, 8,909 unique visitors made 107,776 page views. That means "a lot" in web stats language, for a biodiversity website. And those web stats are growing steadily. We're really pleased at how well the new website is being used this soon after our transition from our clunky legacy NZBRN website.

It's a great start, and still just the tip of the iceberg for what we can all contribute to knowledge of NZ nature.