CBC News, August 13, 2017 – A blitz for biology: Mapping B.C.’s wildlife to mark Canada 150

A blitz for biology: Mapping B.C.’s wildlife to mark Canada 150 –

Surveys in Stanley Park, Howe Sound add to catalogue of species

CBC News · Posted: Aug 13, 2017 9:38 AM PT | Last Updated: August 13, 2017

A participant in Bioblitz Canada 150 looks for seals in Howe Sound. (CBC News)

Professional biologists and casual nature lovers are heading into the woods and out on the water this weekend, hoping to create a catalogue of B.C.’s wildlife.

The events are part of BioBlitz Canada 150, a nationwide effort to document the species that inhabit Canada’s wilderness.

About a dozen people sailed down Howe Sound on Saturday, taking pictures of seals, ducks and mink for the collection.

“For us, understanding biodiversity in an area can really help us understand what species live there, but also what the threats and needs of the species may be,” said Carla Crossman, a biologist with Ocean Wise.

More than 18 species of bird were spotted during the marine survey. 

Stanley Park events open to all

The Howe Sound blitz wasn’t open to the public, but the Stanley Park Ecology Society scheduled events all day Saturday and Sunday for families and amateur naturalists who want to help experts and learn a bit along the way.

Elizabeth Gammell, national coordinator for BioBlitz Canada, said findings will be used as benchmarks for future scientific research and conservation.

The Stanley Park survey is one of five flagship blitzes in urban areas across the country this year. In all, 35 surveys are planned. Photos and locations for each species will be uploaded into an online database.

With files from Brenna Rose 

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