What Is a BioBlitz?
In short, a BioBlitz is a resource survey—a race against time to see how many species of plants, animals, microbes, fungi, and other organisms can be accounted for in a specific geographic area. BioBlitz events bring together scientists, naturalists, volunteers, and other community members to document the spectrum of wildlife present in our community, contributing to an improved understanding of local natural resources.
A 24-hour event, the purpose of Save Mount Diablo’s BioBlitz is to provide a snapshot of biodiversity. It helps to establish important baseline information on species, which often guides stewardship and land management decisions. For example, the event has resulted in rerouting a trail away from newly discovered rare plants, targeting non-native weeds in sensitive resource areas, and contributing rare wildlife occurrence records to regional databases, thereby affecting development proposals.
Cataloging the species found will update past records and provide an ecological snapshot of each BioBlitz site for agency staff. In the time of climate change, these efforts help establish baselines by which change can be measured. Our investigation will also provide insight into species that may need continued monitoring or directed management in the future.
Save Mount Diablo’s BioBlitz is held annually. The date for the next upcoming BioBlitz is to be decided.
Each year a new, ecologically rich location is chosen to be the site of the survey. It has been held at several of Save Mount Diablo’s protected properties, such as Curry Canyon Ranch, Wright Canyon, and Viera-North Peak, as well as in the Marsh Creek State Historic Park and Marsh Creek Reservoir, among others.
2019 BioBlitz Survey Results
In 2019, Save Mount Diablo’s Annual BioBlitz was held from Friday, May 3 to Saturday, May 4 at Save Mount Diablo’s own Mangini Ranch and the City of Walnut Creek’s Lime Ridge Open Space. There were 36 scientists and researchers at the event. In total, 349 species were found: two amphibian species, five arachnid species, 76 bird species, one chilopoda species, two fungal species, 156 insect species, six mammal species, 96 plant species, and five reptile species.
Happy spring! Gather your family, friends, and CalNat cohort and contribute your iNaturalist observation skills to your local community organizations and help collect data for science! April 26-29 City Nature Challenge: The City Nature Challenge began as a nature-observation competition between the San Francisco Bay Area and Los Angeles County in 2016, organized around simple charge: “which city can find the most nature?” Since then, the competition has expanded rapidly, and this year more than 120 cities will participate worldwide! This is an exciting opportunity for California Naturalist alumni to use their skills with iNaturalist, get together, and get involved in a global effort. Volunteer or attend an organized iNaturalist training, bioblitz, an ID party post-challenge, or simply make observations on your own April 26-29. Read the iNaturalist News for each project below for links [...]