The California Academy of Sciences and the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County have issued a challenge: what city can document the most biodiversity between April 14-18?
Centered around the first-ever National Citizen Science Day and Earth Day, these museums are spearheading the effort to get residents and visitors to document as many species as possible using the free iNaturalist platform in cities around the country. Not only will these observations help build up the baseline of urban biodiversity, but it also provides data for our local scientists, land managers, and governments about the areas they study and care for.
So what can you do to help the Seattle win this challenge?
The absolute easiest is to download the iNaturalist app on your phone and to make observations of any and every living thing: species you find in your backyard, in your favorite park, on your walk to school or work. Any observation made in Seattle between midnight on April 14 and midnight on April 18 will count toward Seattle's total. The great thing about using iNaturalist is that you don’t need to know what it is you’re documenting - you just need to take good enough photos that someone else in the iNaturalist online community can ID it for you! More information can be found on iNaturalist’s Getting Started page. Starting on the 14th, you can see your observations and others made in Seattle for the challenge here: https://www.inaturalist.org/projects/city-nature-challenge-2017-seattle
If you’re familiar with Seattle's flora and fauna, you can also help by adding identifications to other people’s observations on iNaturalist for the City Nature Challenge in Seattle.
You can also participate in one or more of the events being held in Seattle during the week of the competition. These events are designed to bring people together to learn more about our local nature, try out iNaturalist, and make nature observations as part of the City Nature Challenge.
Come to our launch event at Machine House Brewery on April 13th at 7pm.
We look forward to seeing what you find in Seattle during the City Nature Challenge!
For more information about the nation-wide event, visit: http://www.nhm.org/nature/citizen-science/city-nature-challenge-2017 or http://www.calacademy.org/citizen-science/city-nature-challenge-