On this episode of Open Space Radio, we are talking about BioBlitzes. And the only thing more fun than saying “BioBlitz” may be actually participating in one. A BioBlitz is an event where your community can visit your park and identify the different wildlife species in that area. It provides an opportunity for people to understand and learn about the various species in that area, and also provides critical data and information to the staff who manage those lands.
As you encourage people in your community to get outside, stay active and connect with nature, a BioBlitz is the perfect opportunity to not only explore local parks, but also learn about the natural wonders around them. It can even be a COVID-19 safe activity as BioBlitzes can be structured to allow people to visit the park on their own. It may even inspire future generations of environmental stewards.
On today’s episode, we’re honored to be joined by the creator of the BioBlitz, Sam Droege. Droege is a Wildlife Biologist for Patuxent Wildlife Research Center in Maryland. We’re also excited to be joined by Brett Johnson, an Urban Biologist for the Dallas Park and Recreation Department.
We discuss how the BioBlitz came to be, what it looks like today, and how it is an important tool for creating ecologically beneficial habitat in local parks and for protecting species that are at risk. Droege shares how he has left the BioBlitz untrademarked and open for public use since its creation, and how local park and recreation professionals can use BioBlitzes for environmental conservation, community engagement and education. Johnson shares how these events have been beneficial in Dallas.
Tune in to the full episode below to hear our full conversation and learn:
- How a BioBlitz helps land managers gain important insights about the species in their own parks and public spaces.
- Tips for park and recreation agencies considering hosting a BioBlitz.
- How using technology — such as mobile apps like iNaturalist — everyday people from all over the world can help inform the efforts to preserve and conserve threatened species.
- The most interesting things Droege and Johnson have found during their own BioBlitzes.
- The future of the BioBlitz, and more!
Interested in learning more about BioBlitzes? You can also sign up to host a Parks for Pollinators BioBlitz this September in your own community and receive tools to help you plan a virtual event with physical distancing in mind. If your agency signs up to host a BioBlitz during the month of September, not only will you be helping raise pollinator awareness, you will also be entered to win a $1,000 prize and one of three ScottsMiracle-Gro prize packs to help with your pollinator habitats or programs!