Last summer, professors, researchers and students at the University of Michigan Biological Station launched what’s known in nature circles as a bio-blitz—in this case, a 3-day attempt to inventory every species of organism living on the grounds of the 10,000-acre UMBS. Interesting to note that the team found 450 species of moths and butterflies and only two species of slime mold. People afraid of woods and swamps might have thought it would be the reverse. Also, the count doesn’t include spiders because no expert spider identifier was around those three July days. And many other species almost certainly exist on the UMBS grounds, but were not found.
The final count came in right around 1,700, including 19 mammals, 81 birds, 323 forms of algae, 37 mollusks …
Below are links to brief essays written by University of Michigan Professor Keith Taylor, his assistant Alan J. Hogg, Jr. and students about the bio-blitz and other outings in nature.
- Evidence of Things Not Seen, by Keith Taylor
- Commoners, by Alan J. Hogg, Jr.
- Flexing Our Mussels, by Stefanie Trout
- Lying in Wait, by Vince McKeon
- Small-Game Hunting, Kyle Anderson
- Eco-Blitzed, by Jordan Boyce
- The Survivors, J. Thomas
- Collaboration in the Reeds, by Janee Kronk
- Batting on the Maple River, by Eryn Duffield
- Raccoons, by Breanne Vander Naald
If you have a memory or thoughts to share about the University of Michigan Biological Station–bio-blitz or otherwise–we invite you to write in the comment section below.