Nature of Acton and Boxborough June 2023

BioBlitz 2023 got off to a good start on June 1, with 24 people signed up. By June 4 there were over 300 observations, including snapping turtles, a bobolink, and a running crab spider. On June 15, the last day, almost 1,000 observations had been recorded over two weeks, despite rainy weather and bad air quality. Some interesting finds included a watersnake, toads, and many kinds of mushrooms.

To summarize, we had 1030 observations, of 514 species, made by 30 observers, and there were 182 identifiers, who validated or confirmed our observations. Click here for the iNaturalist Overview page.

This project exceeded the organizer’s (Matt Liebman’s) expectations! Although most observations were of plants, which is not unusual, there were some interesting observations of insects and quite a few birders out there, including some observations made by sound (Merlin helped here.)

There were some super-observers, like Rob Gogan, and Amy Green (Acton Conservation Commission), Deb Andell (Green Acton), Peter Norton (Boxborough Birders), lawhitehouse and Bill Ossman. Looking at the locations of the observations, it seems like most observations were made in people’s neighborhoods, rather than in conservation areas. That is pretty interesting.

Another interesting finding is that compared to the April 2021 City Nature Challenge, there were not that many more species observed. In late April/early May 2021 we observed 466 species in four days! This compares favorably to our results this June, meaning that the late April/early May timeframe is not so low in biodiversity as expected. 

Thanks again to everyone for contributing, especially some of our super-observers!

Summary from M. Liebman