A few years ago just as the first lockdown started, I joined Gloucestershire Moths Group and I began a major BioBlitz of my garden to see what kind of biodiversity I had here and to help me then increase it and give nature a much needed helping hand. I’m a great believer that, certainly in the UK when so much land is owned by rich landowners and farmers for agriculture giving us little opportunity to preserve and conserve it for wildlife, that we at least can have a direct impact by turning the green spaces we DO own ie our gardens, into an oasis for wildlife and a much needed life-line for our depleting and declining species. The ideal of course, is then to link up those wild gardens to create corridors for wildlife. Anyway, apart from creating a wildflower meadow and native wildlife hedges at my place of work, I am fortunate to have a wooded 2 acre garden which we have spent the last 12 years turning into an oasis for wildlife, lots of log piles, brash piles, bramble and scrub areas, areas of long and short grass, ferns, bogs, areas completely untouched and left alone for nesting wildlife, other areas where boxes have been put up etc. A previous owner was an ecologist at Slimbridge WWT and planted additional variety trees amongst the already established woodland here. As a result, of the 211+ trees we have at least 50 different varieties which in itself means we get a ridiculous variety of biodiversity of creatures that only feed on those specific trees, like Goat Willow, Wild Service Tree, English Oak, Hornbeam, Horse Chestnut, Elm, Ash etc. We also back onto farmland and have a brook, pond and ditches all around, meaning we get farmland, wetland, woodland and garden species here - a mini tapestry of habitats. I started a photographic document, obsessively trying to photograph and record all the different species. I have seen many additional species like the flash of blue from a kingfisher, a common lizard disappearing beneath our broken gazebo and a female stag beetle in one of our log piles. But if I don’t have a photograph of it, I don’t include it! So far I’ve photographed and recorded nearly a 1000 different species so far and have still only scratched the surface - 350+ moths so far including rare micro moths, 40 species of bird so far (still haven’t photographed the skylarks and tree creepers here yet), 25 species of bee so far, well over 200 different native flora species etc.
I just wondered, are there any other people out there who are doing the same thing and doing a garden bioblitz on their garden or allotment? And if so, what have you found? What’s been your biggest surprise? Have you come across any rare species yet? :D
Yes, and I post about my garden frequently. I also started writing on a blog (pollinatorweb.com) and using instagram (@desert_pollinators) to talk about my pollinator garden.
I moved into this house 5 years ago and started a bird list. 4 years ago, I started reshaping the backyard and 3 years ago I became serious about re-wilding the front yard. Then, I joined iNat for the 2021 CNC and began paying attention to all of the other life in my garden. My property is about 0.2-acres (1,000 square meters) for both the house and garden and I recently exceeded 1,000 insect species on my list. This includes 20 species where I have the first and only iNaturalist records (such as the first photo of Braconidae subfamily Microtypinae earlier this year) and another 100+ that represent new state records on iNat and/or bugguide.
Photo: I am one of a handful of users to find and upload Perdita chamaesarachae on iNat
Link to other thread: https://forum.inaturalist.org/t/monitoring-gardens-and-spreading-the-message/26094
Some diversity statistics from my home & garden in New Mexico:
- 16 fungi and 1 slime mold
- 209 plants (plus or minus some dead ones or weeds I ignore)
- 76 vertebrate animals
- 1123 invertebrate animals, with 298 Lepidoptera and 236 Hymenoptera
There’s a collection project of backyard/garden projects here: https://www.inaturalist.org/projects/home-projects-umbrella
One of those projects is by @aztekium, and I wrote a blog post about a new species of tree cricket that was described from observations there.
Wow that’s fantastic! It’s addictive isn’t it, finding and recording new species and seeing how the changes you make to your garden has a positive knock on effect and brings in more species and more biodiversity. Those are very impressive statistics be the way, apart from moths, I’ve hardly scratched the surface with the insect life here, there’s so much still to learn. Well done you on your rare species and first iNaturalist records, my rarest has been a micro moth only 27 total records on iNat from around the world and only mine for the UK, but to have 20 species where you have the first records is amazing! Huge congrats and keep going! :D
Thank you, I’ll check those projects out and your blog post. ;)
Wonderful, never seen anything like that before! :D
That’s a great photo of a fascinating behaviour, thank you for this! The project is also an absolute gold mine!
I should be spending more time in my garden, but since it has balconies and windows overlooking it on all sides, I’m a bit self-conscious about taking photos, especially given how big lenses and loud shutters can look to the neighbours…
Almost the entirety of my observations come from my garden or the garden of family members. Many of my observations are from urban environments even
We have scientists researching our wild bees at Cape Point. It was from them that I saw a stunning video of the tiny bees (too small to carry the dead weight of water). Then a wonder full moment to see it playing out in real life, in my space. Little bee was not going to be disturbed by a mere camera. And it takes a while to make syrup from nectar by blowing bubbles!
This topic was automatically closed 60 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.