Platycam captures images and imaginations
Grange Burn, Hamilton Victoria
- Installation of platypus habitat, solar-powered livestreaming camera, sculpture, riverbank revegetation, accessible seating
- In person event participants: 100
- Online event participants: 240
- Media coverage of project launch audience size: 285,000 people
- Social media posts audience: reach over 90,000 people; 23,000 engagements; 27,000+ video views
- The livestream views: 23,500+
- Post launch community planting events on the waterway: 3 schools(1 primary, 2 secondary), Wellways Australia, Rotary Club of Hamilton, Wannon Water, Southern Grampians Shire Council.
Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning , Southern Grampians Shire Council, Arthur Rylah Institute
Glenelg Hopkins RCS, Biodiversity 2037 Strategy
Platycam is the world’s only livestreaming camera broadcasting platypus in the wild.
The novel approach to wildlife monitoring was designed to connect people to nature which is one of the key components of the Victorian Government’s Biodiversity 2037 Strategy. The project also aligned with the Victorian Government’s funding for platypus, which was listed as vulnerable in Victoria in 2021. It built on significant and long-term waterway rehabilitation works undertaken by the Glenelg Hopkins CMA on the Grange Burn waterway in Hamilton – a known platypus habitat.
Platycam brings this project to life and is delivered by a pole-mounted, solar-powered livestreaming camera. The project site is easily accessible and signage, along with a chainsaw-carved wooden sculpture featuring three platypus were installed to mark the location. Southern Grampians Shire Council assisted the process by installing accessible seating and pathways areas to encourage enjoyment of the waterway and its immediate surrounds.
The project launch event in May 2022 was attended by 100 people and 240 enthusiasts enjoyed the livestream event online. The livestream was switched on and the sculpture unveiled. of the sculpture, signage and seating Hamilton Gray Street Primary School revegetated the banks to complete the project.
Media coverage of the project has been very positive, with articles printed nationally and interviews on major radio stations. Within the first month, social media posts from the launch and subsequent sightings of platypus on the camera reached over 90,000 people and the livestream had been viewed over 23,500 times.
Since the project launch, interest in improving the waterway has increased significantly with community planting events undertaken with primary and secondary schools, disability service providers, Rotary groups, and project partner organisations. The community involvement and interest on social media around spotting of platypus in the Grange Burn has also increased.
Sharing the love of platypus through Platycam has been a great success and demonstrates how using different ways to engage the community with waterways has long term environmental and community benefits.
Platycam project installation, Glenelg Hopkins CMA.