BioBlitz and Beachwalk
A series of “BioBlitz” events is being held at Oregon’s marine reserves July 13-17, but the one on July 16 at the Cape Falcon Marine Reserve differs from the others in combining a guided beachwalk with the bioblitz. CoastWatch Volunteer Coordinator Fawn Custer will be there to help guide the walk and assist with the BioBlitz. The event, known as “Conserving Our Land, Beach, and Sea,” is sponsored by Explore Nature Tillamook Coast, Friends of Cape Falcon Marine Reserve, and the Oregon Marine Reserves Partnership (which includes Oregon Shores), along with CoastWatch.
The easy beachwalk begins at 9:30 a.m. This is a chance to explore a conservation corridor. The end of Neah-Kah-Nie Beach connects with Cape Falcon Marine Reserve and Peregrine Point, a protected forest rising from the sand that extends to the protected lands of Oswald West State Park. A morning low tide will leave tidepools and their inhabitants exposed so that they can be observed. The Oregon Coast Aquarium will be on hand along with Fawn Custer to lead an intertidal BioBlitz (learn more below). The event will last through about 11 a.m.
A BioBlitz is an intensive survey of a defined area on a single day with the goal of identifying all the species to be found in that area at one time. It is a snapshot of biodiversity. These citizen science activities are aimed at helping local scientists better catalogue and monitor the species of the region.
To get involved, download the iNaturalist app (https://www.inaturalist.org/). This is a useful tool (for those with smartphones) which enables any observer of the natural world, of any skill level, to contribute information to a vast national database. This is the method by which participants will contribute to the BioBlitz.