Beginning Oct. 8 and continuing through Oct. 9, Yale Peabody Museum, the Connecticut Audubon Society and Beardsley Zoo will try to count every species during “BioBlitz” in Stratford. During the last BioBlitz, conducted in August 2009, scientists encountered 977 species, including a two inch-long antlion that resembles a dragonfly, the Connecticut Post reported.
The October event is the fourth and final ’blitz of the year and includes several activities open to the public including a bird walk. Events take place at 1207 Prospect Drive in Stratford.
What is the Stratford BioBlitz?
The BioBlitz of Stratford is special because it is done several times so that the scientists see what lives there in each of the four seasons. The same places are visited each season to look for differences.
Who sponsors the Stratford BioBlitz?
Many organizations are involved with the Stratford BioBlitz, but it is co-hosted by Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History, The Connecticut Audubon Society and Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo.
When is the Stratford BioBlitz?
The final BioBlitz of Stratford is 8 & 9 October 2010.
Where is the Stratford BioBlitz?
Stratford BioBlitz occurs throughout the town of Stratford, CT but with Home Base and most public events held at Stratford Point. Stratford Point is located at 1207 Prospect Drive, Stratford, Connecticut.
What can the public do?
The public is invited to specific events on Saturday 9 October 2010. An “open house” of the make-shift lab will be held at Stratford Point and several “meet a scientist” events will take place throughout the town of Stratford on Saturday.
Where can I read more about the Stratford BioBlitz?
Data from the BioBlitz (and previous blitzes) can be seen here.
|9:00-10:00||Bird Walk||Stratford Point|
|10:00-3:00||“Lab open house”||Stratford Point|
|3:00||Closing Ceremony||Stratford Point|
For information on the next Yale Peabody Museum BioBlitz contact:
Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo
The Connecticut Audubon Society
Center for Conservation and Biodiversity
& Connecticut State Museum of Natural History
University of Connecticut
Patuxent Wildlife Research Center
with links to other BioBlitz sites
Town of Stratford
For more information, visit: http://peabody.yale.edu/explore/bioblitz/fall_bioblitz2010.html
Why Do It?
Public Awareness: BioBlitz is designed to increase the public’s awareness of the variety of life in their immediate neighborhood and the services these various species provide to improve the quality of their lives. We usually hear the word “biodiversity” in regard to rainforests with their vast number of species. Yet the diversity of life in our own backyards is phenomenal. We take for granted clean water, fertile soil, and air to breathe. Yet these are all the result of working ecosystems filled with species that perform these tasks. From our morning shower to our late night snack, we are supported by biodiversity every minute of the day. What better way to address the topic than to invite people to share in our 24-hours of discovery and to experience the vast array of species that we can find in their neighborhood park in just one cycle of the day?
Excite kids about science: The BioBlitz is an excellent tool for exciting children about science. This event generates energy and enthusiasm among scientists and lay people alike. It is rare for biologists from many disciplines to have the opportunity to get together, share their passions with each other and the public, and work toward a single common goal. This event is designed to capitalize on that and to encourage interaction with scientists at the “base camp.” The “base camp” is the hub of the BioBlitz. It is a centralized tent equipped with microscopes, computers, and other tools of the trade. This is where identifications take place, species are recorded, discoveries are made, and the tally of species is recorded.
Generate Data: The BioBlitz also generates a list of species found in the park, a first step in successful park management. The BioBlitz has the potential to identify species that should be monitored or controlled. It may identify unique aspects of the park that might otherwise not have been known. This information along with recommendations from the scientists is supplied to the park and the city. Imagine the cost of hiring 168 experts to conduct a survey and make recommendations for park management.
Celebrate with us: The BioBlitz is a celebration of the diversity of life in our backyards. But why celebrate it? We hear again and again about the negative impacts we’ve had on biodiversity such as the loss of species and the destruction of habitats. It seems rare to accentuate and celebrate something positive. The BioBlitz is a chance to highlight the positive impact that city parks and open spaces, with all their diversity, have on our everyday lives. Join us next year as we celebrate biodiversity formally at the BioBlitz. In the meantime, celebrate informally by enjoying Connecticut’s many urban parks and open spaces where there is more to the eye than you see.