The National Trust is asking all wildlife-lovers to help out in their biggest wildlife survey yet.
The plan is to record as many animals, birds, insects and plants as possible over a 12 or 24 hour stretch. This intense period of biological surveying is known as a ‘BioBlitz’ and attempts to record all the living species within a designated area.
A BioBlitz is a more fun and social way of doing a scientific survey, and raises awareness on biodiversity. It encourages people to meet working scientists and ask them questions, as well as often identifying habitats needing protection.
The term was first coined in 1996 by Susan Rudy, a US National Park Service naturalist and since then many organisations across the world have repeated the concept.
The idea by the National Trust is to help understand more about the coastal wildlife around the UK. Events will take place at 25 locations over England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Click here to find the location nearest to you.
Everyone who gets involved will be looking for wildlife and discovering nature found in rock pools, sand dunes, woodland and heathland around the coast.
The head of nature conservation for the National Trust says: “We know that people visit Trust properties on the coast because they are so beautiful. But we also know that many would like to get under the skin of what is there; the special plants and animals that call it home.
“Our coastal BioBlitzes offer a unique opportunity for experts to tell us more about the wildlife that is on our coasts, and for visitors to learn more about what is in the rock pools and mud, and what can be found flying around at night.”
All wildlife discoveries will be recorded and submitted to local wildlife record centres and also the National Biodiversity Network. The information collected will be used to find out how wildlife along the 775 miles of coastline is changing and how best to protect it. This includes World Heritage Sites such as the Giant’s Causeway in County Antrim and the Dorset and East Devon Coast.
You don’t need to be an expert so anyone can go. They recommend you “dress for any weather; bring your sense of curiosity and a packed lunch.”
The BioBlitzes are part of the National Trust year-long celebrations, marking 50 years since they launched their Neptune Coastline Campaign which has cared for over 740 miles of coastline.
If you would like to get involved see here.
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