BioBlitz has begun

BioBlitz has begun. Photo: Debby Ng

BioBlitz has begun and science is quietly taking over the Riverbend Camp – the pool table has morphed into an ecology library, the ping pong table is proudly supporting a computer hub and the latest spectator sport has keen blitzers lining up to gaze down the tubes of a binocular microscope at a stunning slime mould specimen. The ex-pool table is surrounded by readers riveted by mysteries revealed in books of intrigue such as Where the Slime Moulds Creep; Tree Hollows in Tasmania and Tasmanian Plant Names Unravelled. Animated discussions about data collection, camera traps, algae nets, frog croaks and fungi fundamentals are being had over a yummy dessert of baked bananas smothered in chocolate sauce. What a wonderful place to be!

Photo: Debby Ng

Yesterday afternoon scientists and friends of nature travelled to this remote corner of our precious planet from around Tasmania and the mainland to meet the myriad known and unknown inhabitants of the Tarkine wilderness. Survey groups on the coast and plains will find and identify as many species as they can over the next 3 days. From orchid spotting to spider sightings, our understanding of the ecology of the Tarkine is about to take a great leap forward, supporting ongoing efforts to have this environmental treasure recognized, respected and protected. We want the orchids, spiders, algae, creepy crawlies, furry friends, great trees, slime moulds and rock pool dwellers to be safe for ever in this rare and remarkable haven. To help them, we need to find them!

Today high school students are joining the Tarkine BioBlitz and other Blitzers are heading out to the coast.

In the days to come we’ll keep you updated on our experiences and discoveries, so stay tuned.
Helen Cushing

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