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Contact: Regina Rochefort, 360-854-7202July 16, 2014 – Sedro-Woolley, WA – Lace up your hiking boots, grab a camera or smartphone, and join North Cascades National Park Service Complex for the second part of 2014 BioBlitz. On July 12 and 13, research scientists, park naturalists, and citizen-scientists kicked-off the four week event in Newhalem and at Cascade Pass. A continuation of that effort is about to begin.
A BioBlitz brings together scientific know-how and public participation to take a snapshot of the living organisms of a single place. The park is offering a series of free field days, lectures, and excursions to visitors who want to learn more about life in the North Cascades and join this unique citizen-science opportunity.
Dr. Katie Glew, a lichen specialist from the Burke Museum, opened the festivities on Saturday morning. She led visitors and park naturalists on a tree-by-tree and rock-by-rock tour of Newhalem’s diverse lichens. In the afternoon, Dr. Glew, park geologist Dr. Jon Riedel, entomologist Dr. Sean Schoville, and biologist Dr. Robin Kodner held a seminar on the park’s cold-adapted ecosystems.
The opening weekend continued with a trip to Cascade Pass on Sunday. Park scientists, visiting researchers, and citizen-scientists spent the morning and afternoon photographing and sampling life in the subalpine meadows surrounding the pass.
In the next few weeks, visitors are invited to join in this ongoing effort. Saturday evening July 13, at Colonial Creek, biologists David Droppers and Dennis Strenge will host the first of two moth inventories at 8:30 p.m. After this weekend, visitors can also join other biologists for bat inventories, register for a workshop on mosses, take part in a pika and pollinator survey at Cascade Pass, travel on a free excursion to either shore of Ross Lake, and more.
Visitors who cannot make any of these events are invited to download the iNaturalist app to add their observations to the North Cascades BioBlitz project.