Individual brackets are 3 to 7cm across and have irregularly wavy edges. The colours, which are zoned, are various shades of greyish-orange or greyish white. There is no stem, but the attachment region is usually quite narrow. The lower spore-bearing surface is smooth, without pores, and is yellowish to browngrey. The flesh is 1 to 2 mm thick and is less distinctly zoned. The spores are white or very pale brown.
Collared Earthstars are larger than other earthstar species, and they have a spore-sac diameter up to 5cm and arms that span twice that distance when fully outstretched. A flattened spherical spore-sac holds the powdery gleba with which the spores are distributed. As with other earthstars, the bulb is mounted on a star-shaped base, but Geastrum triplex is commonly referred to as the Collared Earthstar because in many instances the arms crack as they bend, with the result that the spore-sac seems to be sitting on a separate saucer-like layer. There is no stem.
For the developers at New York start-up Networked Organisms, smartphones are the butterfly nets of the 21st Century. Their tool, Project Noah, lets people upload photos of plants and wildlife around them, creating a map of the natural world and contributing to scientific research in the process.
Bespectacled scientists of yore would carry around hefty field guides, made up of hundreds of pages of text and photos. But these days, smartphone owners have a lighter option: an app called Project Noah, which aims to help people identify plants and animals as well as collect data from "citizen scientists" about where certain species are located.
Project Noah enables us to be part of a more focused online community where we can learn more about wildlife around us and contribute to scientific research. It pulls participants into deeper, more meaningful engagement by enabling people to go on “missions” to collectively map changes based on sightings.
A modern invention that may also hold the key to saving species in the future. Project Noah is a global study that encourages nature lovers to document the wildlife they encounter, using a purpose built phone app and web community. In addition to the virtual "collection" of species, Project Noah encourages citizen science by linking up with existing surveys including the International Spider Survey and the Global Coral Reef Monitoring Network.