The Fluker Post Project: Community-Based Environmental Monitoring
A project developed by Dr Martin Fluker, Melbourne, Australia

  Recording environmental change since 2008  

NEWS ON THE FLUKER POST APP: Folks, I'm sorry to say that we have been experiencing technical and financial problems with the Fluker Post app.  Until further notice, the app will be in a "read only" format.  In other words, you can only use the app to view collections from individual Fluker Posts, but you can't currently use the app to UPLOAD new photos. The good news is that as long as you keep emailing your photos in to the email address on each individual Fluker Post, that image will eventually be manually posted to the correct Fluker Post album. 

Thanks again for your help and support with this project - Martin Fluker (August, 2019).

Download the *read only* Fluker Post App!!!!!
People can now help monitor over 150 precious environments on their phones via a new app – the Fluker Post App. This app, which was released in March 2018, is a collaboration between Victoria University and the Victorian Government to encourage the community to capture photos of the waterways and landscapes love and use, and immediately upload them into the app to provide a permanent visual record of the location. The app includes an archive of historical photos and allows users to see what the location looked like under different weather or management regimes. 

The Fluker Post App brings together 10 years of photo monitoring in a new and accessible way for the community to enjoy. The app allows people to take photos from any Fluker Post site directly from the app as well as scroll through collections on their phone. Just hit the "add" button and the app will automatically detect the Fluker Post you are standing next to.

The Victorian Government is committed to improving the health of waterways and catchments, and new tools such as the Fluker Post App will support this investment by capturing information from the community about the changing environment. The Victorian Government has funded the development of this app, through the $30 million Regional Riparian Action Plan, which is part of the $222 million committed to improving the health of waterways and catchments in Victoria. 

The Fluker Post App can be downloaded for free via:

The Fluker Post Project now operates in two ways - the Fluker Post App method, and the "email your photo in" method that has been in operation since 2008. The traditional "email it in" system that allows community members to make photographic contributions by taking photographs from fixed photo-points (Fluker Posts), emailing them in to, and having them arranged in chronological order within Google Photo albums.

For this non-app method, no camera is left in the field.  Instead, the top of each eponymously named Fluker Post is cut at such an angle that any digital camera can be placed in the "camera cradle" and the same perspective is recorded every time.  We get photographs sent in from various types of cameras (iPhones, compact digitals, SLR's, etc.), and while the images may reflect slightly different views of the scene created by different focal lengths etc., valuable information on the visual state of the environment can always be deducted. Instructions on each Fluker Post ask people passing by (bush walkers, local residents taking their dog for a walk, tourists visiting the region, etc.) to use their own camera, place it in the cradle, take a photo and send it in. This project started in May 2008. Just check out the Fluker Posts by region in the tables below, and then follow the link to web album to see the visual changes occurring at these environments over long periods of time.

Fluker Post Album Links by Region/Project

The DELWP Funded Rivers 2040 Project (spread throughout the state of Victoria)

  RIV1 Dogs Rock Reserve, Moorabool River RIV2 Meredith Education Reserve, Barwon River  RIV3 Barwon River at Mt Brandon Peninsula Reserve – located on viewing platform facing west  RIV4 Aire River, Sand Road bridge RIV5 Cann River from Princes Hwy Bridge
 RIV6 West Cann Rd Bridge RIV7 Glenelg Hopkins CMA Fitzroy River at the Tyrendarra Streamside Reserve RIV8 Glenelg Hopkins CMA: Fitzroy River estuary mouth RIV9 Darlot Creek at the Tyrendarra Indigenous Protected Area RIV10 Glenelg Hopkins CMA: Estuarine wetland complex at the Fitzroy River estuary reserve
  RIV11 Hughes Creek RIV12 Sevens Creek RIV13 Sevens Creek RIV14 Irymple RIV15 Irymple
 RIV16 Cobb & Co Road, Carlsruhe RIV17 Campaspe River, upstream of Millison Rd, Kyneton RIV18 Campaspe River Kyneton Walk RIV19 Campaspe River at English Bridge Reserve RIV20 Campaspe River
 RIV21 Ovens River. Harrietville. Upstream from Howards Bridge (Left bank). RIV22 Ovens River. Freeburgh Streamside Reserve. Left bank. RIV23 Left bank. ~100 m downstream of Confluence of Ovens River and Eurobin Creek RIV24 Left bank.upstream of caravan park. Confluence of Buckland and Ovens River. RIV25 Great Alpine Road, Smoko, ~ 600 m downstream Bibby Lane
 RIV26 Smoko campground. Great Alpine Road. Smoko RIV27 Rainbow Creek  RIV28 Halls Gap Erosion Site RIV29 RIV30 Wimmera River Revegetation at Big Water
 RIV31 Merri River Estuary RIV32 Yambuk Lake Estuary Mouth RIV33 Yambuk Lake Estuary Mouth RIV34 Curdies River Estuary Mouth  RIV35 Flat Foot Bridge, Anglesea
 RIV36 Barwon River Estuary RIV37 Lake Corangamite carpark and information area RIV38 Barwon River, Geelong and Yollinko Wetlands habitat area RIV39 Goulburn River at Goulburn Park, Seymour RIV40 Powlett River Estuary
 RIV41 Wreck Creek Estuary Mouth RIV42 Sale Common  RIV43 Jones Bay from Eagle Point Bluff RIV44 Lake Tyers Beach  RIV45 Snowy River Estuary
 RIV46 Tarcombe Road Streamflow Gauge RIV47 Tidal River, Wilsons Prom RIV48 Mollison Creek, Pyalong

Dandenong Creek, Heathmont

The Great Ocean Walk/Great Otway National Park

The Surf Coast Region - Corangamite Catchment Management Authority

The Bellarine Peninsula Region
 BB1 BB2 BB3

The Warrnambool Region

Victorian Marine Parks
The Mornington Peninsula Region

You Yangs Regional Park
 YY1 YY2YY3 

The Great Barrier Reef
MW1 MW2 MW3 

Sandringham Beach

Clifton Springs Region

Point Lonsdale Region

Melton Botanic Garden

Brisbane Ranges National Park

The Gunbower National Park

Kororoit Creek
South Australia - Adelaide

Sea Girt, New Jersey, USA


It's a simple system that works.

The number of Fluker Posts in the ground as of November 2017: 143

The Fluker Post Research Project is operated as a research project through Victoria University, Melbourne, Australia. The types of research questions we are seeking to find answers to include:
  • How can we build a tool that allows land managers to detect change and make management decisions that result in sustainability gains?
  • How does longitudinal community-based environmental monitoring align with non-citizen science methods of environmental monitoring?
  • How can community-based environmental monitoring be used in a classroom situation?
  • How can the concept of citizen science be effectively employed to create historical records of changes occurring at natural environments?
  • How can we track the long term environmental changes caused by such affects as climate change, usage, precipitation, and the spread of disease?
  • How do users of public spaces relate to the environments they are experiencing?
  • How do methods of repair or modification of natural environments last over time?

Recent Fluker Post Related publications:

Augar, N., & Fluker, M., 2014, "Developing social media for community based environmental monitoring," Proceedings of the 25th Australasian Conference on Information Systems, ACIS

When surveyed about the value of the Fluker Post project, here is what some of the land managers involved in the project said:

"We were looking for a heightened way of engaging the community. I actually thought this would be a good mechanism that not only engages them and brings them along but also empowers them to feel a sense of ownership and involvement in managing the environment"

"It's an opportunity to bring the community along in an even stronger way given that they’ve been part of that program to various measures on community working bees. This also makes a stronger connection, ownership, etc., with the site as well and people feel like they may be contributing"

"What we were hoping for, when we put the photo point posts in, was to get some valuable monitoring data of how these sites have progressed over time. Often, what really tells a story are visual tools"

Current Collaborations

This project has engaged with the following industry, local government, land management agency and educational partners: Parks Victoria, Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP), Melbourne Water, Corangamite Catchment Management Authority, North Central Catchment Management Authority, Bellarine Bayside Coastal Management, Bellarine Catchment Network, Bellarine Landcare Group, Swan Bay Environment Association, City of Greater Geelong, Warrnambool City Council, Borough of Queenscliffe, Bayside Council, Friends of the Melton Botanic Garden, Friends of Sandringham Beach, Deakin University, Monash University, RMIT University, the University of South Australia, New Jersey Army National Guard, Cardno, Warrnambool East Primary School, Derrimut Primary School, Clifton Springs Primary School, and nearly 2,000 community volunteers who have taken photos from Fluker Posts and emailed them in.

The efforts of all these partners are hugely appreciated. Many thanks :)

The following items of media coverage related to the Fluker Post project help to further explain the project: