Assateague Island National Seashore Celebrates NPS Centennial During May 21st Event
BioBlitz Fun Day will be held from 8 a.m.- 4:30 p.m. at the Assateague Island National Seashore. During the event, participants will form teams to identify as many species as possible in our park, including birds, aquatic sampling, reptiles and amphibians, plants, GIS, shells, beach intertidal zone sampling, butterflies and flying insects.
Those coming out can sign up with a team or come solo and be assigned to a team. Teams will consist of up to 20 people. The morning session will begin at 9 a.m. and the afternoon session will start at 1 p.m.
If you would like to pre-register for the event, you may do so by contacting Kelly Taylor at Kelly_Taylor@nps.gov. If you pre-register before May 6th, you will receive a hot dog lunch.
On-site team registration begins at 8 a.m. at the North Beach Picnic Pavilion. Sunscreen, hats, mosquito and tick repellant, greenbriar proof-pants, bright clothing, and boots are recommended.
MCBP encourages you to help celebrate and #FindYourPark!
Interview with Kelly Taylor, science communicator at Assateague Island National Seashore
Q: Tell me how this event will help celebrate the National Park Services’ Centennial.
KT: To celebrate 100 years of stewardship, the National Park Service has teamed up with the National Geographic Society to host a major BioBlitz in Washington, DC on May 20th and 21st on the National Mall (A BioBlitz is a quest to discover living organisms through public involvement. During these rapid biological surveys, scientists and volunteers of all ages and backgrounds work together to compile a “snapshot” of biodiversity.).
Simultaneous BioBlitzes will be conducted at national park sites in all seven NPS regions; our regional BioBlitz will be at the First State National Historical Park. Throughout the rest of the country, additional BioBlitzes of various sizes and scopes will take place the week of May 16-21, including our BioBlitz Fun Day on May 21st. Species data from all BioBlitz activities during the week of May 16-21 will be collected through a mobile application called iNaturalist and broadcast on the National Mall.
Q: What is the goal of BioBlitz Fun Day?
KT: The main goal for our BioBlitz Fun Day is to inspire the next generation of park stewards, visitors and advocates. We want to get people out into areas that they normally don’t go into and try to encourage them to think about biodiversity in a way that never crossed their mind before.
Q: What can people who have never attended expect?
KT: We want our BioBlitz participants to unleash their inner scientists and help us do a biological inventory of specific areas of the island. They’ll choose a team and then head out with an expert to identify as many organisms as they can in the 2 hour and 45 minute window. We’ll have morning and afternoon sessions, so visitors can attend one or both sessions. We’ll have check lists available and will be encouraging people to use iNaturalist, but if they have their own binoculars, guide books, etc. they are more then welcome to bring them along!