by Sam Kieschnick
Ready for spring? It’s a favorite season for most of us – the flowers are blooming, the birds are singing, the bugs are out, and it’s city nature challenge time! The Dallas/Fort Worth area will be participating in the fourth annual international City Nature Challenge organized by California Academy of Sciences and National History Museum of Los Angeles. This year, we’re participating with around 300 cities around the world to document the most observations of the most species by the most citizen scientists.
We will be using the iNaturalist tool to share our observations. What do you need to do? It’s easy! Make iNaturalist observations anywhere within the DFW metroplex (the 10 surrounding counties of Dallas/Fort Worth) April 30th through May 3rd. Make sure to have observations uploaded and identified to the best of your ability before May 9th. No need to join any project on iNaturalist or anything like that – observations are automatically uploaded to the project. The most valuable observations are made in public parks, but any and all observations count!
To emphasize the relevancy of this sort of event: This is a way for us to highlight both the urban biodiversity and the large constituency of naturalists who seek out this biodiversity. When public land managers and policy makers recognize this, they start (or continue) to manage public lands with wildlife in mind. There are many examples of this in action in Dallas/Fort Worth, and your participation matters!
Check out last year’s results for the DFW area here.
Sam Kieschnick, TPWD Urban Wildlife Biologist DFW