It’s Bioblitz Time in TN State Parks

January 23, 2019  |  Permalink

The beautiful and sometimes bizarre looking creations of the natural world often cause us to pause, break out our smartphone and snap a photo. This is especially true with kids whose height advantage and unquenched curiosity have them noticing EVERYTHING and stealing our phones to snap photos of them. 

We may send these to our eccentric Aunt that somehow knows what all these things are, or we turn to social media to post it to a naturalist page or desperately google “wing-shaped seed thing from tree” to be presented with dubious returns. We may simply just enjoy it for the innate purpose of having it!

An assortment of mushrooms and fungi found in Tennessee How would you describe these fungi to Google?!

Well, Tennessee State Parks wants these photos of the strange, fascinating and every-day creatures you find out in our parks. We’ve launched the first ever Tennessee State Parks Bioblitz on iNaturalist and we are urging you to participate.

What is iNaturalist? It’s an app for smart phones where you can log in, and upload those photos you’ve snapped! Well how is this any better than social media? The photos can be viewed and ID’d by the iNaturalist community. Or, if you want to try to ID them yourself, the app provides some assistance by “seeing” nearby observations of similar things and gives you an educated guess at what it may be.

So that’s super cool, but what’s a bioblitz and how does this help my favorite park? A bioblitz is an attempt to catalogue every living thing in a given area. During 2019, any time you upload a photo to iNaturalist that you took while in a Tennessee State Park, the observation will be added to the Tennessee State Park bioblitz! This helps each park develop a checklist of all the species that are harbored within their boundaries. We’ve set a goal of hitting 10,000 observations by the end of the year! HELP US REACH OUR GOAL!

Different animals you may find in Tennessee State Parks, including dragon flies and birds Some of the wonderous finds from our state parks. What will you find?

Are you a professional –ologist or do you have a good handle on a specific group of organisms? Fungus? Reptiles? Trees? Help us out by logging in to iNaturalist and submitting your guesses to the observations!

You can find the iNaturalist project here and you can download the iNaturalist app for iOS or Google store to begin participating.

Check out our events page for opportunities to get out to parks!

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