Big Backyard BioBlitz
Insects on phone camera (Illustration by Lisa Vanin)
Be a citizen scientist: Help conservation biologists by making observations in your local green space.
Is the rusty-patched bumble bee still in Ontario? Has the invasive Asian giant hornet taken a foothold in Canada? Scientists can’t answer these important questions unless they have data.
While conducting inventories is an integral part of a conservation biologist’s work, observations made by the general public are increasingly providing valuable information on species distribution in places that biologists may not ever access, like your backyard!
You can contribute to science by taking part in a bioblitz — a biological survey to document all the organisms within a defined area in a set period of time. Here’s how:
1. Sign up The Big Backyard BioBlitz run from July 29 to August.
2. Register at natureconservancy.ca/2021bioblitz to get started.
3. Observe Head out into your backyard or local green space and photograph or record the sound of any interesting organisms you come across.
4. Upload Upload your findings to the iNaturalist app or website. iNaturalist will record the date and location.
5. Identify You don’t need to identify what’s in your photo, but you are encouraged to try. Other iNaturalist users will provide you with suggestions to help you validate what you‘ve found.
6. Learn Check out the observations map to discover the species near you.
BONUS Share your discoveries on social media using the hashtag #NCCBioBlitz.
This story originally appeared in the summer 2021 issue of the Nature Conservancy of Canada Magazine. To learn more about how you can receive the magazine, click here.
Explore additional content from our summer issue here >