What is a BioBlitz?
A great way to take action to help save biodiversity is a BioBlitz. A BioBlitz is a census of species in a certain area such as a park or forest. During a BioBlitz, people count all the species they can find. A BioBlitz can take place over a day or in just a few hours. Usually the longer the BioBlitz, the more accurate. The term BioBlitz was thought up by the National Park Service naturalist Susan Rudy. She named it when she was on the first BioBlitz team.
The first BioBlitz took place from March 31-June 1 in 1996 at the Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens in Washington D.C. and over 1000 species were found. People go on BioBlitzes to take an inventory of species in an area to judge that area's biodiversity. Usually BioBlitzes happen annually to monitor the number of species, to see if there are any new ones, or to find out if any are endangered or becoming endangered. Bioblitzes also help raise awareness about biodiversity.
Bioblitzes can happen anywhere, even in your backyard. They are a way for scientists, students, naturalists, tourists, and community members to get involved. They can also help people understand more about biodiversity.
How Can You Join a BioBlitz?
You can go to a search engine on the Internet and type "BioBlitz" and the name of your city or town. If you live in a more temperate area, often the BioBlitz will be held in the spring or summer. You can also join the National Geographic BioBlitz. Each year it is held at a different national park. These BioBlitzes are leading up to the U.S. National Park Service Centennial in 2016. The 2009 BioBlitz is going to be held at the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore on May 15-16. The 2008 BioBlitz took place at the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area. People found and identified more than 1,700 species.