The next Science Live @ Te Papa event on Friday 16 May reveals the secret world of ferns. Join botany curator Leon Perrie live online to find out what makes these Kiwi emblems special. Plus, can you help to make a scientific discovery?
As part of this event, we want you to tell us what ferns live around you.
Here’re some tips to get you started:
- Not sure what a fern looks like? Try our ‘Is it a fern?’ test, which will train your eyes.
- Check out our blog post ‘How to learn ferns’ to see what fern features to photograph.
- Don’t worry if you don’t know the names of the ferns you’re finding – we’ll tell you! (well, we’ll try…)
Grab your camera and get hunting!
Win a prize
Each image you send us of a different New Zealand fern gets you in the draw to win a prize.
There is one prize for an individual and one prize for a school class. The prizes are either a natural history book from Te Papa Press or, if you can make it to Wellington, a behind-the-scenes tour of Te Papa’s botany collection with curator Leon Perrie.
Entries close Saturday 31 May 2014.
All entries must be images of ferns (or lycophytes) seen in New Zealand. Check out our guides to common New Zealand ferns, New Zealand’s tree ferns and lycophytes. These should help you find more ferns for entering our prize draw!
If you are entering as a school class, make sure the names of the class, teacher, and school are clearly stated in your entry.
Enter the competition
There are two ways to enter the prize draw:
1. NatureWatch NZ
The best way to enter is to be a ‘citizen scientist’ and upload your fern photos to the NatureWatch NZ website. This allows your observations to be used for future research. Each entry that uses NatureWatch gets double the chance to win the prize. (NatureWatch NZ is independent of Te Papa.)
Upload your observations to NatureWatch
- Enter the name of the fern you saw (type “Pteridophyta” if you think it is a fern but don’t know what kind). Tick the “ID Please!” box if you’d like help with the identification; Te Papa’s fern experts or others in the NatureWatch crowd-cloud community will help you.
- Enter the date you saw the fern.
- Enter the locality where you saw the fern, using Google Maps if you like.
- Upload your photo(s). (You can enter additional photos if you save your record and then edit it again.)
- Add the tag “TePapaScienceLiveFerns”.
- “Save observation” (or “Save and add another”).
Important: if you’re using NatureWatch to enter our prize draw, make sure you include the tag “TePapaScienceLiveFerns”; otherwise, we won’t know you intended to enter.
2. Email us
You can email your fern images to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please send a separate email for each different fern you find.
If you’d like to be a citizen scientist but had difficulty using NatureWatch, let us know in your email and we’ll try to upload your images for you (we’ll need the date and locality).
If you don’t win the prize, just remember that you’re still winning because your observations are contributing to science! Perhaps you’ll discover something new or interesting. We’ll let you know. At the end of the competition, we’ll post a summary of the findings.
Happy ferning …