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Introduction to Grass ID Skills Workshop

Event description

Are you an ecologist wanting to improve your grass ID skills?  Do you need to identify grasses to species, or have an interest in doing so? 

Then this course is for you!

The only publicly available grass-focused, microscope-based ID course of its kind available in Australia!

Learn to confidently recognise 20 major Queensland grass genera & their ID features.

This course is designed for ecologists who conduct vegetation surveys & need to reliably identify grasses to species with scientific accuracy.

However, it is also suitable for anyone who has some background in plant ID and wishes to extend their botanical knowledge and skills base.

You will use a stereo microscope (provided) to gain familiarity with the two main diagnostic features of grasses – inflorescence & spikelet.

By becoming familiar with a broad range of grass spikelets, you can confidently recognise those features in the field using a simple hand lens.

At the completion of this course, you will:

  • Be familiar with up to 20 of the more common grass genera of Qld & the morphological concepts underpinning their ID.
  • Be able to recognise spikelet & inflorescence features & interpret the botanical language used to describe them.
  • Be able to find those features in grasses you examine in the field using a hand lens.
  • Most importantly, you will have built a solid foundation on which to continue a lifetime of independent learning in grass identification & botany.

Course details:

  • Course cost = $845 GST inc.
  • A laptop will be very useful - otherwise, all microscopes, forceps, learning aids will be provided.
  • Lunch (vegetarian and non-vegetarian sandwiches), snacks and morning/afternoon tea are provided.
  • Each participant will be provided with detailed digital course notes including microscope photographs illustrating many of the key features of 20 grass genera.
  • In addition, each participant will receive to keep:
    • a pair of forceps for dissecting spikelets,
    • a pocket metal ruler ideal for use in field IDs.

This course will be conducted by Simon Danielsen, a field botanist & ecological consultant with 20 years' experience in botanical field surveys & identifications across northern Australia.

Simon has run his own ecological consultancy operation (Astrebla Ecological Services) for 9 years & is highly experienced in vegetation mapping, threatened plant surveys & the field identification of grasses & other plants. In 2014, he spent a year in the ID room at the Bangkok Forestry Herbarium in Thailand, completing over 400 botanical determinations in that time.

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