BioBlitz: Uncovering Local Biodiversity

Articles | Jul 2012

BioBlitz: Uncovering Local Biodiversity

July 02, 2012  |  Articles
Lauren Gluck, P.W.S.
Senior Environmental Scientist in Pare's Wetlands Group
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BioBlitz is an event that brings volunteers, working scientists, and naturalists together to tally as many species of organisms as they can on a particular parcel of land. These events are held throughout the country to bring naturalists together, to educate communities on the vast number of species that surround us in various habitats,  and to demonstrate the value of biodiversity to the quality of our lives.

For the last 12 years, the Rhode Island Natural History Survey has organized annual BioBlitz events throughout Rhode Island. Their 2012 event was recently held from June 8-9 in Jamestown, on approximately 600 acres surrounding Great Creek in the central portion of the Island. This parcel contained a variable landscape that included rocky shoreline, salt marsh, mature forest, open pasture, shrub swamps, vernal pools, and freshwater streams. This year, a record number of volunteers identified 1,340 species.  Among these were two plants never identified during past BioBlitz events, and four animals on the state’s rare species list.

After learning about the Rhode Island Bioblitz from a friend, I volunteered for the upcoming Bioblitz in the Boston-area town of Dedham, hosted by the Dedham Natural Wonders program.

I am excited to join other scientists and community volunteers to explore the biodiversity of various habitats in Dedham, and also look forward to some informative interaction with biologists of various backgrounds and specialties. The day will be full of fun for all ages in the great outdoors. If you are interested, come join us! 

Click here to read more about the Rhode Island 2012 BioBlitz:

…and stay tuned for a blog post on my experience at the Dedham BioBlitz event later in July!