Check out these amazing finds from the 2022 Big Backyard BioBlitz

Monarch butterfly on Joe-pyeweed (Photo by NCC)

Monarch butterfly on Joe-pyeweed (Photo by NCC)

August 15, 2022 | by Wendy Ho

Over the July 28–August 1 weekend, thousands of volunteers joined the Nature Conservancy of Canada’s (NCC’s) annual Big Backyard BioBlitz. Together, we were able to contribute a total of over 50,000 observations of more than 5,000 different species. 

The weekend event provided an opportunity for participants to connect to the natural world — from remote areas to urban communities. Some participants learned more about the species and their abundance that they hadn’t previously noticed along their regularly travelled routes and others took to local green spaces, such as their own backyards. Together, this community effort helped increase local species inventories, while allowing participants to deepen their appreciation for nature.

Over time, these invaluable contributions may be used to target areas to protect species at risk or help combat invasive ones.

Thanks to everyone who took part. The more we know about species, the more we can help the nature that surrounds us all.

Overview of our 2022 Big Backyard Bioblitz
Overview of our 2022 Big Backyard Bioblitz

Look what we found!

The most observed category was plants, followed by insects, fungi, birds, arachnids and mammals. The image above shows the most observed species during the event. Can you recognize which ones are locally native to your area, which are not native, and which are invasive? For me, I have observed one native insect (the monarch butterfly, which is also a species at risk!) and one of its host plants (common milkweed), right in my front yard.

There were several rarer species at risk recorded during the event, including chestnut-collared longspur, eastern whip-poor-will, Duke’s skipper, western bumblebee, mapleleaf (a freshwater mussel), butternut, dwarf lake iris, northern map turtle and massasauga (rattlesnake).

If you missed this year’s Big Backyard BioBlitz, don’t worry. There are still plenty of opportunities for you to get closer to nature and contribute to conservation throughout the year. You’re welcome to sign up for the Big Backyard Bioblitz — the link will be up for a few more days and will provide you with access to helpful materials. There are also virtual opportunities to learn about the biodiversity and conservation efforts from coast to coast to coast. Keep your eyes out for event offerings on our website!

Wendy Ho (Photo by NCC)

About the Author

Wendy Ho is Nature Conservancy of Canada's editorial coordinator.

Read more about Wendy Ho.

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