Journal archives for June 2015

June 04, 2015

The official count: 40,396 observations!

If you've also created a profile on, you'll be receiving an email soon with an overview of the snapshot results. Stay tuned for more details here from me later, but for the time being you can visit these two links to learn more:

Thank you all for your wonderful contributions! We hope you'll be inspired to continue.

Posted on June 04, 2015 04:48 PM by carrieseltzer carrieseltzer | 3 comments | Leave a comment

Thank you all for your contributions to the Global Snapshot of Biodiversity!

I just wrote a short update for the event-specific project, which you can read here:

You can also read more in a piece written for the National Geographic Voices blog:

Posted on June 04, 2015 04:52 PM by carrieseltzer carrieseltzer | 2 comments | Leave a comment

June 08, 2015

BioBlitzing my "lawn"

We have a small yard that is currently about 3 weeks past needing to be mowed, so just about every grassy thing that can go to flower/seed has. I thought this would be a good time to start trying to photograph and identify all of the plant species in the yard. I'd love to be able to know them all to genus! Our "lawn" is mostly weeds. This evening I focused on uprooting and photographing the grassy things (hopefully the lawn will get mowed soon...). Bit by bit I'll get them all!

If you have great suggestions for IDing turf grasses, please let me know!

Posted on June 08, 2015 02:47 AM by carrieseltzer carrieseltzer | 9 observations | 2 comments | Leave a comment

June 15, 2015

The upside of hiking alone

About once a month I hike Billy Goat Trail in Maryland with a group of women, but on Saturday I was the only person who showed up! The group hike usually moves quickly and I have to be careful not to get left behind when I inevitably stop to take pictures, so it was exciting to hike by myself and stop for as long as I wanted.

Hike highlight: slime mold! I searched for them in vain during the global snapshot of biodiversity, but I think this rainy weather we had last week really brought them out. I think I saw at least 3 different kinds of slime mold. All of the slime molds I found were on well-decayed (barkless) fallen logs. Anyone know their slime molds? I'm a new enthusiast as a result of my own challenge issued during the global snapshot (still need to run the numbers on that, but no one has told me they did it).

I found the first slime mold about 50 ft from the trailhead, so I mostly had eyes for those the entire time, but I made a handful of other observations too.

Posted on June 15, 2015 02:32 AM by carrieseltzer carrieseltzer | 24 observations | 3 comments | Leave a comment

June 19, 2015

Who saw more than 13 different taxa in 11 days?

Right before the global snapshot of biodiversity began, I issued a challenge: Try to find & photograph all 13 of iNaturalist's "iconic taxa" groups in 11 days. The idea was to push people outside of their comfort zones and encourage them to look for organisms they usually overlook.

A handful of people came close, but only one person recorded all of these:
-Fungi (including lichens)
-Ray-finned fishes
-Other Animals (not in an animal category listed above)
-Kelp, Diatoms, and Allies

Congratulations to kcastaneda, a new user from California! Great job, Kathy!

Two others were close. juancruzado and lst each only missed Chromista. Well done! Chromista are much harder if you aren't near a coastline!

I know that I've had my eyes peeled for slime molds as a result of this challenge, and I hope that the global snapshot of biodiversity encouraged each of you to notice something you otherwise might have missed. You can see some of our favorite observations on the Great Nature Project site.

Feel free to post your favorite observations from the event below!

Posted on June 19, 2015 05:28 PM by carrieseltzer carrieseltzer | 1 comment | Leave a comment