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Tag archives for Saguaro National Park

Tucson BioBlitz Transect: Walking Across the Desert

As part of the 2011 BioBlitz in Saguaro National Park, NG Explorer-in-Residence J. Michael Fay walked some 70 miles over seven days on a transect across park and city, noting all the plants and animals along the way. Experience the whole exhilarating journey for yourself.

Counting Stars at the Saguaro National Park BioBlitz

  By Sean O’Connor Artificial lights flood the night sky, making the urban and suburban lives that so many of us live a little brighter, but not necessarily for the better. Light pollution also drowns out the sea of stars shining through our atmosphere. Who doesn’t love to look up at the night sky and…

Soil, the Foundation of Life — and the Saguaro BioBlitz

Michael Conway of the Arizona Geological Survey was on hand at the recent BioBlitz in Arizona’s Saguaro National Park to teach students, scientists, and bloggers about something many of us don’t readily associate with a 24-hour inventory of all the species we could find in the preserve: the rocks and soil. To get a better…

Buffelgrass Wanted: Dead and Gone

Meg Quinn, of Pima County Natural Resources, Parks and Recreation, talked to me at the recent BioBlitz in the Saguaro National Park about the scourge that’s blighting much of the Sonoran Desert of Arizona — a tough alien grass that’s taken hold and threatening the native ecosystem.

National Natural Landmarks Program Celebrates U.S. Heritage

Margi Brooks of the National Natural Landmarks Program was on hand at the recent BioBlitz in Saguaro National Park to promote an extensive system of natural heritage preservation that not many Americans know about. The National Natural Landmarks Program was started in 1962, so getting ready to celebrate its 50th anniversary, Brooks told me. It’s…

Photographing the BioBlitz

Kevin FitzPatrick is a wildlife conservation photographer who specializes in shooting BioBlitzes. I found him at the 2011 BioBlitz in the Saguaro National Park, Arizona, where he told me why he has developed a passion for documenting the special species count in our national parks.

The Wild Cats in our Backyard

The University of Arizona mascot is the Wild Cat, or bobcat, so it is only fitting that the university is involved in research and conservation initiatives for the benefit of wild cats all over the world. “Our mission is to conserve and research all 36 species of wild cats worldwide,” Lisa Haynes, of the University…

Moth Inventory Finds Scores of Species in Saguaro Park

Chris Grinter is with the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco, He recently joined the 2011 BioBlitz in Arizona’s Saguaro National Park, where he and colleagues identified some 145 species of moths in the preserve. The specimens included moths as small as a pinhead, others much larger, and at least one alien species that…

How the BioBlitz Ties Us All to the Sacred Earth

Cecil Manuel, of the Cecil B. Manuel Inter-Tribal Dancers, shared his cultural and spiritual knowledge at the recent BioBlitz in Saguaro National Park. Among the dances he demonstrated was the Hoop Dance. “There are so many different stories that we tell about the dances. Different tribes have different versions of how they came about,” he…

Meet the Snake Kings of Saguaro National Park

During the recent BioBlitz in the Saguaro National park, Arizona, we met two members of the Tucson Herpetological Society: Robert Villa and Hanna Strauss. The Tucson Herp Society is dedicated to conservation, education and research concerning the amphibians and reptiles of Arizona and Mexico. Villa and Strauss were at the BioBlitz with two species of…

“Unknown” Flies Found in 2011 BioBlitz Park

A two-week sampling of flies in the Saguaro National Park yielded hundreds of specimens, many of them yet to be described scientifically. John Francis, National Geographic’s Vice President for Research, Conservation, and Exploration, talked to Mike Irwin at the recent BioBlitz in the park.

BioBlitz 2011 Vodcast: Final Species Count

This fifth Vodcast from the 2011 BioBlitz in Tucson, Arizona, features the unveiling of the final tally of species.

BioBlitz Finds Hundreds of Species New to National Park

The 24-hour BioBlitz in Arizona’s Saguaro National Park last weekend added more than 400 species to park lists, including 190 species of invertebrates and 205 species of fungi previously unknown to the park, the National Geographic Society said in a news announcement today.

Investing in the Next Generation of National Park Stewards

With the growing urbanization of the U.S., connecting students to the National Parks right in their own backyards in urban areas is important not only for the whole national park system but also for protecting ecosystems, whether they are in the parks or not, says Lois Morrison, executive director of the Harold M. and Adeline S. Morrison Family Foundation.

Scorpions That Glow in the Dark

Saguaro National Park, Arizona–How do scientists find scorpions and certain other crawling animals in the dark, when a great many animals big and small are out and about in the desert night? They use a special light which makes the scorpions glow bright green, like the numerals on a watch. Paul Marek, an entomologist at…