BioBlitz! Oklahoma 2018

BioBlitz! weekend is my most favorite, stressful, and fun work days of the year.

My favorite thing is showing people the amazing organisms that live right hear in Oklahoma.  Our featured organism this year, and star of this year’s event shirt, was the American Burying Beetle – a federally protected endangered species.  I was immensely  pleased that Stephanie Rainwater was able to lure several species of burying beetles to her super stinky traps.  How many of these people had never even heard about burying beetles before?  How many of these people had never seen an endangered species before?

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Stephanie Rainwater of Guy Engineering set traps to catch burying beetles at BioBlitz! 2018. Because the American Burying Beetle is federally endangered, Stephanie must have a permit from the US Fish and Wildlife Service to set up traps in eastern Oklahoma. 

The stressful part of this weekend was the weather!  A high chance of heavy rain was forecasted for the area for the weekend.  However my first weather worry was when the event started with a heat index of 99!  Then Saturday it started to sprinkle.

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You can’t see the drops, but it started to sprinkle.

Would all 300 people dash for cover in our small community building?  Luckily we didn’t get any significant rain until the downpour about half an hour before the horn sounded to end the inventory.

And the best part of this fun weekend is that it is my job!  I get to geek out with expert biologists from around the state who are exhilarated to find a fuzzy caterpillars, hold large snakes, show off beetles, record bat calls, electrofishing, and identify all the plants!


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