Weekly Warm-Up: Get Ready for BioBlitz!

Bringing thousands of students and citizens together with hundreds of scientists to explore a gorgeous national park is one awesome way to go about a BioBlitz.

But it’s not the only way!

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A hornworm hangs off a plant. Hornworms (caterpillars of the five-spotted hawkmoth) are common throughout the entire American continent. Photograph by Robert Sisson, National Geographic

The purpose of organizing a BioBlitz is to document every bit of life within a set parameter in order to understand that location’s biodiversity. This might include observing the magnificent redwoods of Muir Woods—and the earthworms that dig near it roots. It might include carefully peering under the leaves of kolea and kawa’u trees to find … spiders. It might include cataloging a large, invasive nutria or a tiny, new-to-science tardigrade.

But you don’t need a national park, thousands of people, or hundreds of experts to have a BioBlitz. You can host one with anyone, anywhere, and National Geographic has the resources to help you do that.

A student practices classifying plant species during a BioBlitz. Photograph by Patricia Norris.
A student practices classifying plant species during a BioBlitz. Photograph by Patricia Norris.

First, take a look at our BioBlitz Education webpage. Here you can find everything you might need to have your own BioBlitz in your backyard, schoolyard, or local community.

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Squirrels are another common sight across the United States. How many squirrels live in your schoolyard? Photograph by David Alan Harvey, National Geographic

No matter what you do with your students, the point to remember is that a BioBlitz can happen anywhere. And in some way, it is even more special when students are discovering the vibrant diversity of life thriving in their very own community.

This blog post was written by former Nat Geo intern Rebecca Bice back in 2014, but gets you ready for BioBlitz 2016—mark your calendars for May 20-21


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