Saturday, July 13, 2013

National Geographic BioBlitz

Our class was honored to be a part of National Geographic's annual BioBlitz.

"A BioBlitz is a 24-hour event in which teams of volunteer scientists, families, students, teachers, and other community members work together to find and identify as many species of plants, animals, microbes, fungi, and other organisms as possible." - National Geographic website

This year's BioBlitz was held at Jean Lafitte National Historical Park. The park had two separate inventories happening. Inventory is the collecting, analyzing, and recording of specimens seen. One on land and one in the swamp. The younger grades conducted inventories on land at specified plots and the older grades conducted their inventories in the swamp from boats.

In preparation for our inventory, we discussed and looked at creatures we might encounter. We also identified creatures and plants to avoid - water moccasins, cotton mouths, wasps, bees, alligators, poison ivy. Then, I modeled for the students how the inventory was to be completed. We would collect specimens by sorting through leaf litter, swooping nets through bushes, trees, and air, and log busting.

This was a fun, learning experience that they will never forget!!

Watch the video of our day.

If you live in the San Francisco area, be on the lookout...BioBlitz is coming your way in 2014. Golden Gate National Recreation Area will host next year's event. You can email to receive updates and notification when registration is open. I highly recommend this event for your students!

BioBlitz 2013 - slideshow

If you would like to read short blog posts about others' experiences, check here.
If you would like to read about the discoveries made at Jean Lafitte, check here.

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