The public is invited to take part in Joshua Tree National Park’s first “biodiversity hunt” to be held at the Oasis of Mara in Twentynine Palms on April 29 and 30. Scientific experts from southern California will join forces with community naturalists and race to identify every type of plant and animal within the 58 acres of the oasis from 10 am on Friday until 4 pm on Saturday. Final tallies of the number of species identified will be announced on Saturday afternoon.
The Oasis of Mara Biodiversity Hunt is designed to be part rapid survey, part educational event, and part celebration of biodiversity. “We want visitors, community members, and experts alike to come away feeling they’ve learned something new about the diversity of life here at Joshua Tree National Park” says Vicky Chang, park science coordinator. This event is the first of six biodiversity hunts planned to take place in sensitive habitats throughout the park.
Programs and activities designed for kids and adults include ranger-guided walks, nature talks, educational booths, and games. Participants can become “citizen scientists” for the day, learning how to identify local plants and animals from experts and conducting their own mini-biodiversity hunts.
The Oasis Visitor Center is located at 74485 National Park Drive in Twentynine Palms. For further information, contact Dr. Vicky Chang at (760) 367-5579 or email@example.com.