Arizona BioBlitz Team

What is a BioBlitz?

A BioBlitz is a planned event that aims to locate and identify as many species as possible in a specific area over a specific period of time – essentially taking an “ecological inventory”. Event organizers and Species Matter Experts (SMEs) work with members of the public and community organizations to create a data “snapshot” of the biological diversity in the target area. Using apps like iNaturalist and eBird on smartphones, citizen scientists and career biologists alike can collect high quality data by snapping pictures of wildlife and having those observations verified by others. Data collected during a BioBlitz can be used by scientists and policymakers to gain a stronger understanding of the ecosystem and may inform future research and management decisions. A BioBlitz is also an important opportunity for community members to learn about plants and wildlife, gain data collection skills, and build a stronger connection to the landscape.

The iNaturalist BioBlitz Guide and National Geographic BioBlitz Program are excellent places to start if you are looking for a solid introduction to the world of citizen science!

Who is the AZ BioBlitz Team?

The AZ BioBlitz team is an informal partnership between the Arizona Chapter of The Wildlife Society (AZTWS) BioBlitz Committee & the Arizona Game and Fish Department (AZGFD). Our folks tend to wear multiple hats with these and other logos on them. The partnership grew out of shared support and execution assistance on both Petrified Forest National Park and Charlie W. Painter BioBlitz events. Following on our support of those 2018 & 2019 events, the AZ BioBlitz team switched gears from a support role to a leading role, setting a target to host a mobile, recurring event.

The team's goal is to act as a primary host for a BioBlitz event with a unique Arizona target area every other year. And in the off-years, the team will fill supporting roles for events hosted by other organizations. Like so much else planned for 2020, the inaugural event was pushed back due to the coronavirus pandemic. We had a successful first event with the Hassayampa Ecosystems BioBlitz on April 9-10, 2022. Read more about the event here!

The team also acts as the coordinators of the AZ BioBlitz Hub, which facilitates the exchange of information and resources among an even wider group of entities involved in the execution of BioBlitz-type events across the state.