Organize a Bioblitz in Your Community!
Are your kids curious about all of the many different plants and animals that they find while exploring outside? Have you ever been curious about the amount of biodiversity in your community? Would your students benefit from a hands-on species identification project? Do a bioblitz!
A bioblitz is a community event designed to quickly compile information on biodiversity in a relatively small area. Community members of all ages participate in the events alongside trained naturalists and scientists to find and identify as many species of plants and animals as possible in, generally, a period of 24 hours. A shorter bioblitz (one the length of a school day or even just an afternoon) can be organized, though – if a smaller area of land is explored, a classroom of students or even just a few families together can work their way through the identification process.
Resources for blitz-planning are available on the National Geographic website – the organization has provided everything from instructions for early planning to a suggested materials list! A bioblitz can offer students a unique hands-on learning experience that will make them more aware of the amount of biodiversity in their neighborhood and will teach them to identify new species. Communities will benefit from the events as well – neighbors can gain a greater awareness of what’s in their backyards, and perhaps even become better connected to the natural world that surrounds them!
[Photo credit: (ccl) Katja Schulz]