We’re Going on a Nature Hunt!
Do you know a budding biologist? A little nature lover? A young (or young at heart) scientist? Are you and your family interested in learning more about the amazing biodiversity that lives right outside your door? Grab your binoculars, camera and sense of curiosity and participate in the CRD’s first ever Biodiversity Challenge.
Between May 21 and 24, 2021 join other nature lovers across Greater Victoria to build a record of the species that surround us using the free iNaturalist Canada website or app. iNaturalist provides image recognition for photos you take of local nature, so that you and your family can learn to identify new plants and animals while having fun outdoors. With an adult’s help, iNaturalist is an engaging way for kids to learn about nature and participate in real world citizen science.
Joining the CRD’s Biodiversity Challenge is simple and fun:
- Find nature in your backyard, neighbourhood, favourite park or beach between May 21-24. Observations of wild native plants, animals, fungi, insects, tracks, or even scat are all welcome.
- Use a digital camera or smart phone to capture your sightings.
- Create a free iNaturalist account and upload your observations and photos.
- Identify your findings as best you can and have people from the iNaturalist community help confirm your identifications.
- Search iNaturalist for the CRD’s Biodiversity Challenge project page to see live updates of what other families are finding. Join the project to have the chance to win some fun prizes.
Biodiversity at your Doorstep
You do not have to stray far from home to find amazing plants, animals and ecosystems in the capital region. Did you know that Greater Victoria lies in one of Canada’s nature hotspots, bursting with an incredible diversity of plants and wildlife? Nestled among our neighbourhoods and workplaces are salmon-bearing streams, Garry oak meadows, vibrant wetlands and dynamic shorelines. In our backyards and local parks we can find pollinating insects, migrating birds, native wildflowers, and towering trees. This incredible abundance of life, or biodiversity, supports clean air and water, food security, recreational and cultural opportunities, and is key to the high quality of life we enjoy in the capital region.
Observing and learning about the natural world that surrounds us can boost mental health and wellbeing, and is a key step in conserving nature for future generations. Visit www.crd.bc.ca/biodiversity for more information on biodiversity in the CRD and the iNaturalist challenge, including details about prizes and iNaturalist resources that will help you get started.