BioBlitz 2010 – the results …
A biodiversity race against time was held over 24 hours on the 21st – 22nd of May at six wildlife sites across the country. This was a race against time to see which site could record the most species. The sites that took part were: Fota Wildlife Park, Co. Cork; Glenveagh National Park, Co. Donegal; Connemara National Park, Co. Galway; Coole Park, Co. Galway; Newbridge Demesne, Co. Dublin and Wicklow Mountains National Park. This unique event was organised by the National Biodiversity Data Centre to celebrate the International Year of Biodiversity.
Over 130 scientists were involved in the day and thousands of species were recorded. Of course each site had their specialities with Coole Park recording record numbers of invertebrates, Connemara National Park focusing on bryophytes, and Wicklow National Park had its own diatom expert. Newbridge Demesne was not expected to record as many species as some of the other sites because of the lack of habitats of conservation importance but amazingly 86 fungi species were recorded from the site by Kieran Connolly, Howard Fox and Maria Cullen, including a species new to Ireland. Just shows what’s out there when we look!
There was hectic recording activity over the last hour. Despite the late burst of activity from Coole Park, the winners were Connemara National Park with a total of 542 species recorded over the 24-hour period – an amazing tally. The Connemara National Park team are therefore crowned BioBlitz 2010 Champions!
Thank you to all who participated including those not listed!
Congratulations to Conemarra National Park – 542 species!
Pat Aylward; Elizabeth Birdthistle; Ken Bond; Dermot Bree; Caitríona Carlin; helen Carty; Sinead Conroy; Caitríona Cunningham; Christine Eschmann; Brendan Flaherty; Cian Flaherty; Margaret Flaherty; Gadaloff family; Marie Louise Heffernan; Rory Hodd; Padraig Keirns; Caitríona Maher; Claire Moore; Ger O’Donnell; Colette O’Flynn; Angus O’Donnell; Sarah O’Malley; Chris Peppiatt; Carole Reynolds; Mary Ruddy; Myles Ruddy and Bryony Williams.
Coole Park – 534 species
Roy Anderson; Robert Angus; Frank Bamuel; Penny Bartlett; Sinéad Biggane; Mike Bryan; John Conaghan; Gordon D’Arcy; Mike Fitzsimmons; Julie Fossitt; Janice Fuller; Jervis Good; Peter Hodge; Frances Lucy; Kate McAney; Hilda MacLochlainn; Stephen McCormack; Donal McDonnell; James Moran; Ger Morgan; Brian Nelson; Tara Ní Fhloinn; Áine O’Connor; Áine O’Loughlin; Ellen O’Sullivan; Margaret Parry; Pyotr Petrov; Eugenie Regan; Ignacio Ribera; Matt Smith; Raymond Stevens; Chris Williams and Mike Wyse Jackson.
Wicklow Mountains National Park – 494 species
Letizia Cocchiglia; Maria Cullen; Ian Edwards; Katy Egan; Ciara Flynn; Howard Fox; Wendy Gillissen; Mary Kelly-Quinn; David Lawton; Liam Lysaght; Hugh McLindon; Sean Meehan; Méabh Ní Chuinneagáin; Anne Marie O’Shaughnessy; Gillian Stewart; Eleanor Sutherland; Angus Tyner; Maria Walsh; Faith Wilson and Leszek Wolnik.
Glenveagh National Park – 486 species
Bob Aldwell & the Donegal Butterfly Recorders’ Network; Mary Brennan; Clare Bromley; Amy Burns; John Cromie; Stuart Dunlop; Ian Fellows; Aengus Kennedy; Úna Fitzpatrick; Carol O’Callaghan; Northern Ireland Fungus Group; North Western Regional Fisheries Board; Fionnuala O’Neill; Ralph Sheppard; Liz Sheppard and Melinda Swann.
Newbridge Demesne – 441 species
Bat Conservation Ireland; Diarmuid Browne; Brenda Comerford; Colm Clarke; Kieran Connolly; Shay Connolly; Maria Cullen; Fingal Branch BirdWatch Ireland; Liam Feeney; Colum Fitzgerald; stefanie Fleischer; Howard Fox; Brian Keeley; Ian Killeen; Liam Langan; John Lovatt; Darach Lupton; shawn McCourt; Evelyn Moorkens; Eamonn O’Donnell; Julie Roe; Colm Ronayne; Yosh Sakiyama; Olaf Schmidt; Alan Sullivan; Hans Visser and Lynda Weekes.
Fota Wildlife Park – 429 species
Meabh Boylan; Abi Brewer; Padraic Casey; Rhena Casey; Kieran Cronin; Chris Cullen; Sara Curtis; Cian Gill; Jo Goodyear; Lynda McSweeney; Catríona Mc Cabe; Orla Mc Laughlin; Mark Nolan; Lisa O’Grady; Lorna O’Mahony; Aisling O’Malley; Caroline Patrick; Rosalyn Thompson; Barry Walsh; Andrew Walsh; Paul Whelan and Mark Wilson.
What is BioBlitz?
BioBlitz brings together scientists and recorders in a race against time to see how many species can be recorded in a 24-hour biological survey of five of Ireland’s state-owned properties. The public is invited to observe the activities, to interact with them and to participate in the range of other activities arranged by the host venues. By pitting the five venues against each other, it brings an added dimension to the event, allowing comparisons to be made between the sites, and to gain further insights into the relative biological richness of the different habitats.
How does it work?
A ‘Base Camp’ is established at each venue which serves as the hub for the BioBlitz at each site. This is managed by staff of the parks and the National Biodiversity Data Centre, working in collaboration with some key experts invited to the event. Base Camp is equipped with species lists and other equipment that might be needed on the day to aid the identification and validation of species observed. It is also from where recorders and volunteer effort is coordinated to optimise the recording effort to generate the greatest number of species recorded over the duration of the event and where the overall species tally is done.
When does it take place?
The BioBlitz starts at a set time on a set date and ends precisely 24 hours later. BioBlitz 2010 started at 17.00 hrs on 21 May and finished at 17.00hrs on 22 May, which was International Biodiversity Day. The tallying of species ended precisely at 17.00hrs on 22nd May. Any outstanding records not logged by 17.00hrs were kept and used to generate a complete species list after the event. The winning site, Conemarra National Park, was announced by the National Biodiversity Data Centre at 18.00hrs on the day.
How is it organised?
Scientific survey activity runs throughout the 24 hour period, and members of the public are invited to participate and attend the event.
As it is primarily a fun event, the rules are straightforward. Record all the species seen within, or from, the site you are surveying between the start and finish times. This includes wild, naturalised and feral species, but does not include domesticated or species held in captivity. Lists of species recorded can be submitted by anyone, but surveyors should register at Base Camp in advance. Records should be submitted on the official BioBlitz recording sheets available at Base Camp on the day.
A record must be to species level and must include the minimum information: species name, recorder name, detailed location name and/or grid reference.