A census is taking place this Saturday, but humans won’t be counted.
Searching, scouring and peaking under stones and in mushrooms, a team of
biologists and amateur experts hope to find more than 1,000 species in Metchosin for the annual BioBlitz. A bioblitz is an intense period of time when people attempt to count every species within an area.
The first year about 850 species were recorded and last year the number reached 950.
This year a wish list of 300 vascular plants was drawn up in hopes of finding species that are most likely in the district. Geyer’s onion (allium geyeri var. tenerum) is one species that biologists know is at Tower Point at Witty’s Lagoon but has yet to be recorded.
Most plants are vascular with the exception of mosses and algae.
“We are sending out the wish list with the experts,” said Kem Luther, a BioBlitz co-ordinator. “It’s just the names, the people who do this don’t need photos, they are all experts. Think of sending out a vascular plant SWAT team.”
Sweet violets grow all over the district, but haven’t been tallied before. Luther figures it’s because they are so common everyone thinks someone else would have recorded them.
Starting at 6 a.m. on Saturday the birders will be out followed by experts in moss, moth, lichen, fungi and many other creatures and plants.
Other BioBlitz volunteers will meet at the Boys and Girls Club outdoor centre, 3900 Metchosin Rd. at 8:30 a.m. and 1 p.m., April 27.
Anyone interested in volunteering can join a team. For more information go to www.metchosinbiodiversity.com