Join DuPage for Pollinators Bioblitz June 21-27

  • About a dozen ants crawl around the base of the thistle-like blooms of blue cornflowers.

    About a dozen ants crawl around the base of the thistle-like blooms of blue cornflowers. Daily Herald file photo

 
 
Updated 6/9/2021 3:39 PM

The DuPage Forest Preserve District and other members of the DuPage Monarch Project invite nature fans to join the "DuPage for Pollinators Bioblitz" June 21-27 to raise public awareness of these important animals.

To participate, people simply take photos June 21-27 of any pollinators they see -- hummingbirds, bees, butterflies, moths, beetles, etc. -- anywhere in DuPage County and upload them them to the free iNaturalist app.

 

Ecologists with the DuPage Monarch Project will then review the images to get a better idea of what's going on in wild DuPage.

"About 75% of the planet's 250,000 species of flowering plants could not produce seeds or fruits without animal pollinators," said Lonnie Morris, coordinator at the DuPage Monarch Project. "In fact, researchers estimate that one in every three bites of food we eat exists because of them.

"But our native pollinators face threats from habitat loss, invasive species and insecticides," Morris said.

The DuPage Monarch Project bioblitz focuses on pollinators found in DuPage County. The data creates a foundation for conservation policies and evaluating their effect on monarch butterflies, bees and other pollinators.

The DuPage Monarch Project and DuPage Forest Preserve District are inviting the community to join in a bioblitz June 21-27 to take photos of the local pollinators.
The DuPage Monarch Project and DuPage Forest Preserve District are inviting the community to join in a bioblitz June 21-27 to take photos of the local pollinators. - Daily Herald file photo

To participate:

• Download the iNaturalist app to your smartphone, and create an account. Make sure to let the app use your location so it can record where you take each photo.

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• Join the DuPage Monarch Project: Communities Protecting Pollinators Bioblitz 2021 on the iNaturalist app.

• When you're ready, select "Observe" under the camera icon at the bottom, and snap your photos.

• Select "Next" and then "Share." Once your photo uploads, you're done, or you can share more!

Participants are invited to register online for a free online tutorial that shows more about how to input data into the iNaturalist app.

The tutorials will be offered from: 10 to 11 a.m. Saturday, June 12; 7 to 8 p.m. Thursday, June 17; and 9 to 10 a.m. Friday, June 18.

Among native bee species, more than half have declining populations. An online list of these bees shows their status and geographic range. Nearly 1 in 4 is at increased risk of extinction, according to the Center for Biological Diversity.

The Forest Preserve District of DuPage County has been connecting people to nature for more than 100 years. More than 6.2 million people visit its 60 forest preserves, 166 miles of trails, six education centers and scores of programs each year. For information, call (630) 933-7200 or visit dupageforest.org, where you can also link to the district's e-newsletter, blog, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages.

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