January 13, 2020

Ready for the City Nature Challenge 2020?

The City Nature Challenge (CNC) is back! This year the CNC will have about 200 cities participating in this global effort to document urban biodiversity. The 2020 CNC: Boston Area will now include within the I-495 corridor, out to Stellwagen Bank, and include Cape Cod and islands. You can once again help boost Boston to the top of the leaderboard by making observations from April 24 - 27 and/or helping to identify observations from April 28 - May 3, 2020. Please join the 2020 project for more news and updates here. Join the 2020 iNaturalist project to keep up to date: https://www.inaturalist.org/projects/city-nature-challenge-2020-boston-area

Thanks to your efforts in 2019, we recorded 20,443 observations of 1,480 species by 1,133 observers in the Boston Area! For 2020, we aim to increase participation, improve the quality of observations, and promote exploration of diverse habitats.

If you or your organization is interested in joining the 2020 CNC please join us on Monday, January 13th for a Welcome Webinar (https://brandeis.zoom.us/j/679819416) to learn more. We will meet using Zoom from 10:30 - 11:30 am. Our Welcome Webinar will provide an overview of the CNC and be an opportunity for new and returning organizations to ask questions, share feedback, and connect. We will also host a CNC Meet-up for participating organizations on the afternoon of Monday, February 10 at the Franklin Park Zoo - please save the date!

We look forward to another great City Nature Challenge!

On behalf of the Boston Area City Nature Challenge Steering Committee,

Aimee Bonanno, New England Aquarium and New England Ocean Science Education Collaborative
Colleen Hitchcock, Brandeis University
Eliza Forman and Cynthia Mead, Zoo New England
Peter Burn, Suffolk University
Pam DiBona, MassBays National Estuary Partnership
Stan Rullman and Mark Chandler, Earthwatch Institute
Rob Stevenson, University of Massachusetts Boston

Posted on January 13, 2020 01:17 by hitchco hitchco | 0 comments | Leave a comment

June 13, 2017

Stay Involved with the City Nature Challenge

Greetings Boston CNC participants!

We hope you are enjoying the summer weather, the singing birds, blooming plants, and active insects. Thanks again for contributing your observations in the City Nature Challenge! With your help, Boston achieved:
3945 observations
748 species
262 participants

While we did not finish in the top 3, Boston did a fantastic job finding wildlife after a long, cold winter and spring! Compared to the same five days last year, we made over 27x as many observations and documented 9 times as many species. Nearly 1,900 observations of 450 species reached "research grade" status and will flow to open biodiversity platforms: observation data to Global Biodiversity Information Facility and images to the Encyclopedia of Life.

And across the country, the 5 days of the CNC were the BIGGEST days in iNaturalist history. For the 16 participating cities, the totals were:
125,819 observations (whoa!)
8,636 species
4,246 people
You can read the full results here.

Next year, the CNC will go INTERNATIONAL! If you want to continue building your naturalist skills or just spend more time outdoors, here are a few ideas to stay involved:
- Search for public programs at your local parks and conservation lands such as Mass Audubon, DCR state parks, Boston city parks, greenbelts, Emerald Necklace Conservancy, and more!
- Visit our local national parks, wildlife refuges, and Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary
- Brush up on your natural history knowledge at Boston's awesome museums, aquariums, and zoos: Museum of Science, New England Aquarium, Harvard Museum of Natural History, Franklin Park Zoo, Stone Zoo, and more
-Join one of the Boston area hiking, photography, or naturalist groups on Facebook or Meetup.com such as Cape Ann Area Naturalist Meetup

Stay tuned for updates on the 2018 City Nature Challenge to compete against cities around the world and contribute to our understanding of global biodiversity!

Posted on June 13, 2017 14:44 by alorenz alorenz | 0 comments | Leave a comment

April 28, 2017

Quick survey about the City Nature Challenge

City Nature Challenge participants! Thanks so much for your energy and enthusiasm for the City Nature Challenge this year – it was incredible to see so many people excited to document their local nature.

Please help us make the City Nature Challenge even better next year!

If you took part in the City Nature Challenge – whether you made 1 observation or 1000 – we’re hoping you’ll fill out this short (only 5 questions!) survey to let us know about your experience. All input is important and appreciated!

Link to survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/CNC2017

Thanks in advance!
Alison Young & Lila Higgins, City Nature Challenge coordinators
(California Academy of Sciences & Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County)

Posted on April 28, 2017 00:28 by kestrel kestrel | 0 comments | Leave a comment

April 19, 2017

3 more hours left to observe... 3 more days to compete!

We hope you all have enjoyed getting outside and making observations over the past 5 days! With only a few more hours left to observe wildlife, there are still several days for us to continue competing in the City Nature Challenge. The national organizers will announce winners on Saturday morning April 22, Earth Day! We can win for the number of observations, species, participants, and other categories (endangered or rare species, iNaturalist "firsts," and more)!

Here are the things you can do to stay involved this week:
1. You can continue to upload your observations from April 14-18 even after the event is over.
2. Go through your observations to see what identifications others have suggested.
3. Help make identifications by searching through observations from the project. Every species counts!

Thanks for making Greater Boston's biodiversity count, and we hope you discovered something new about your community!

Posted on April 19, 2017 01:28 by alorenz alorenz | 1 comments | Leave a comment

April 16, 2017

Keep up the great work!

Hey Greater Boston Team!

Thanks to the 121 people who have made observations so far this weekend! We've racked up over 1000 observations of 312 species so far. Right now we are in the middle of the pack with observations and species, and there is still plenty of time left to catch up with the California and Texas cities! Click here to see the leaderboards.

Challenge for the day: Enjoy the incredible weather and try to catch some shots of invertebrates, reptiles, or other animals that might be taking advantage of the warmth!

Posted on April 16, 2017 15:56 by alorenz alorenz | 0 comments | Leave a comment

April 13, 2017

200 and Counting!

Wow, we have surpassed 200 members in our project, nearly triple any other participating cities!!

Thanks to everyone for joining and for spreading the word to families and friends, and a special shout-out to the teachers and students at Medford High School for taking time to enjoy the outdoors and make observations over spring break!

The City Nature Challenge starts at tonight at midnight, and the weather for the next 5 days looks spectacular. Do you plan to go to certain areas or focus on any groups of organisms (birds, plants, plankton, bacteria?) We'd love to hear what you're up thinking!

Keep track of the leaderboards across the country here . With your help, we can take a snapshot of the biodiversity of the Greater Boston Area and win this thing!

Ready.... set.....

Posted on April 13, 2017 19:35 by alorenz alorenz | 2 comments | Leave a comment

April 10, 2017

Countdown to the City Nature Challenge!

The City Nature Challenge is only 5 days away, and the competition is heating up - literally! With the recent warm rainy nights and warm days this week, the frogs and salamanders have returned to vernal ponds, migratory birds are returning, insects are more active, and green is returning to the New England landscape.

Thanks to @berkshirenaturalist for starting a conversation about meetups and events. You can find a list of organized events here - some of which require registration (free) and most others have no registration.

We will continue updating that site and sharing meetups around the area both on the above website and on this journal. Feel free to add your comments or questions below if you are planning a meetup in your area.

It's easy to make observations for the City Nature Challenge! If you are new to iNaturalist, check out the site's excellent resources about how to taking good photos with your smart phone, uploading observations, and making identifications on the Getting Started page.

With your help, we can discover more about our local biodiversity, contribute observations to research, and win this thing!!

Posted on April 10, 2017 19:59 by alorenz alorenz | 2 comments | Leave a comment