• Sunrise at the Cholla Cactus Garden

    Joshua Tree

    National Park California

There are park alerts in effect.
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  • Cottonwood Trails Closed

    Trail access remains closed to Cottonwood Spring Oasis, Lost Palms Oasis, and Mastodon Peak. More »

  • Pinto Basin Road Under Construction; Expect 30+ Minute Travel Delays

    Visitors should expect 30+ minute waits when heading north and sound bound on the Pinto Basin Road. Due to construction activity around Cottonwood Visitor Center, additional waits of 30 minutes may be in place when leaving the visitor center parking lot. More »

  • Deteriorating conditions of Black Rock Canyon Road

    The road leading to Black Rock campground has deep potholes, is deeply rutted, and can be difficult to negotiate, especially in large vehicles. Please drive with caution.

Park To Host Third Biodiversity Hunt

Release Date: March 14, 2013
Contact: Jennie Kish Albrinck, 760-367-5520

Joshua Tree National Park's third Biodiversity Hunt will take place on Friday, March 22 and Saturday, March 23 at both Cottonwood Spring and Lost Palms Oasis. Scientists, students, desert naturalists, community members, and park staff will join forces in a 30-hour race to document every type of living thing in these desert riparian, or wetland, habitats.

From 10 am on Friday until 4 pm on Saturday, BioDiversity Hunt teams will search around the clock at Cottonwood Spring, Lost Palms Oasis, and along the Lost Palms Oasis Trail for insects, birds, reptiles, plants, spiders, mammals, and more. Temporary lighting at Cottonwood Spring and Lost Palms Oasis on Friday night will aid the search for invertebrates. The resulting documentation will increase our understanding of the species richness in these areas and provide a critical component in creating a baseline to understand potential changes in park biodiversity as a result of climate change.

During the hunt, visitors can hike the Lost Palms Oasis trail, interact with park rangers and scientific teams at Cottonwood Spring, learn more about the park's remarkable riparian biodiversity through interpretive displays and exhibits, and observe BioDiversity Hunt teams racing to find and identify desert flora and fauna.

The Cottonwood Spring and Lost Palms Oasis BioDiversity Hunt is the third of four species surveys planned at Joshua Tree National Park. Participants at the 2011 Oasis of Mara BioDiversity Hunt and the 49 Palms Oasis BioDiversity Hunt in 2012 found over 600 species at each location, over 80% of which were insects. The fourth Biodiversity Hunt is scheduled for April 26 and April 27, 2013 at Smithwater Canyon.

For more information and to find out how you can participate, contact Biological Science Technician Amelia Rodelo at (760) 367-5579 or amelia_rodelo@nps.gov.

Did You Know?

Fault map of the park

Joshua Tree is crisscrossed with hundreds of faults, and is a great place to see raw rocks and the effects of earthquakes. The famous San Andreas Fault bounds the south side of the park and can be observed from Keys View. More...