Sat. Feb 24th, 2024
Local schools bomb Murphys Point

This post comes to us from Mark Read, Interpretive Naturalist at Murphys Point Provincial Park.

Last month, two local schools took part in a mini biobombing at Murphys Point, using their outdoor skills to explore, discover and identify the park’s various wildlife.

What is a bioblitz?

A bioblitz is an event in which local experts and volunteers record as many species of wildlife as possible during a set period of time (usually 24 hours).

Find and identify

Over two days, local students were able to find and name more than 100 species, with many more still to be identified.

Year 8 students from Perth District Collegiate Institute spent half a day near the main beach specifically looking for fish, dragonflies and damselflies, moths and wetland creatures. Fourth and fifth grade students at Queen Elizabeth School in Perth spent half a day in a different habitat, adding plenty of plants to the bill.

Citizen Science via iNaturalist

These “citizen science” projects not only provide an inventory of biodiversity in a defined place but, perhaps more importantly, an opportunity for nature lovers to get out, explore, and “do science” with expert leaders.

During biolitzes at Murphys Point, we add the species we find to an online species database through iNaturalist. This allows us to have a permanent (and growing) photographic record of what we find in the park.

See also  My Journey to Becoming a Discovery Guide at Rainbow Falls

You can do bioblitz too!

There are many opportunities for you and your children to try bioblitz this summer. Check your park’s online events page to see if bioblitzes are taking place at the parks you want to visit.

Here at Murphys Point, we will conduct a full day event on Saturday August 18 with a moth night the night before. There will be numerous guided walks and experts available in our outdoor lab throughout the day.

View the Murphys Point iNaturalist project online or search for your own local park’s iNaturalist project to see what interesting species have been recorded there.

To help celebrate the 125th anniversary of Ontario Parks, parks across the province are hosting 13 stewardship programs to help protect biodiversity in provincial parks.