Stay in the know about wildlife, water quality, and ecosystems on Sanibel and Captiva Islands and in Southwest Florida

Over 1.2K Observations During Earth Week BioBlitz!

April 29, 2024
earth week bioblitz sea school walk

A total of 563 species of flora and fauna were observed during SCCF’s inaugural Earth Week BioBlitz in Lee County from April 21-27! This included 1,259 observations from 138 users*, and 261 individuals pitched in to help identify species.
*Numbers updated on May 1, 2024

A big shout out to iNaturalist users birdleaves and barbijd92, who were our top two BioBlitz contributors, recording 232 species and 160 species, respectively!

graph showing pie charts of number of observations, species, and identifications
From left: Purple martin chicks, painted leaf, a dicot skipper, and small-spine sea star.

“We are thrilled to see so many people in our community getting outside and helping our biologists with this comprehensive biodiversity survey,” said SCCF Coastal Watch Director Kealy McNeal. “We have very unique ecosystems here in Southwest Florida, and it is crucial to keep an eye on the health of the biodiversity, especially after major events such as Hurricane Ian.”

A BioBlitz is a focused effort to take inventory of all living things in an area, essentially like a species census. To participate, users uploaded observations of plants and wildlife to the SCCF Earth Week BioBlitz project on iNaturalist.

The majority of observations were of plants, with insects and birds following. The most-observed species were:

  1. Brown anole (Anolis sagrei)
  2. Cabbage palmetto (Sabal palmetto)
  3. Cardinal airplant (Tillandsia fasculata)
  4. Sea ox-eye (Borrichia frutescens)
  5. North American racer (Coluber constrictor)
Data points show were observations were recorded throughout Lee County — a huge thank you to everyone who contributed!

“We can’t wait to do this again next year and compare the data,” McNeal said.


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