Odolympics prep and thoughts

I am so excited for this year's Odoympics Citizen Science project run. I have been at the BioBlitz thing for a long time. I have done at some of the local parks and have been a huge participant in the City Nature Challenge in the DFW area since we began it back in 2017. What can I say I love the BioBlitz life. It is vital and very important to understand the ecology of small areas and even the big picture. However I have not just done a BioBlitz on one type of thing. Sure I have done the annual Pollinator BioBlitz however that has quite a range. With this one it is looking for Dragonflies and a lot of them. I have seen quite a few this year so far. However I have to say I think there has been a kind of decline in numbers. That may just be me and maybe only in some areas. I went to a few ponds to get some what of a warmup going however some areas don't have that many species but it is not peak season for many yet. I am going to give it as much gas as I can on this one. I will be doing some camps when this is going on but I will be able to keep it up as the week goes on and even on the weekend. I have been trying to find a bunch of different ones this year so far. This will be very interesting. I have been a major Ode fan for a while now. It was when I was with @brentano and @sambiology that day at Oliver Nature Park that I started to really get into them. After a while I have been on a few guided dragonfly hikes with them but mostly when I am on my solo adventures or with my family on vacation I try to find as many as I can. I love Dragonflies and Damselflies. When it comes to insects my biggest loves are Odes, Lepidoptera (both butterflies and moths), I also like Beetles, Planthoppers, tree, and leafhoppers are really growing on me. I love a lot of insects though. This Odolympics thing will be very interesting to participate in. I mean when there is a BioBlitz that I can make I will do it. I mean Citizen Science should be regarded as a civic duty that should be taken more seriously by some folks. I mean don't over do it but yes citizen science is the best way to help our in lab/ field scientists when they are in a jam and can't get out and about. It is also good as a bit of extra education and even public service. I don't know that is just me. Call me an idealist in some cases. I mean I have been totally involved with citizen science and I love it. I mean it may not be the most important thing on many people's scopes but with me it is a way to learn about the local ecology and to see how science is done in the field and how it plays out in real time. I also like how you connect with those around you. It is all about community and how we share our connections with nature.

With the snow storm that hit Texas in mind that has been the question on my mind; what has been hit badly and what has not??? I have seen some odd trends. I have seen a lot less dragonflies in some areas and I am not saying that declines are state wide but there are areas that have seen their own declines in population. I have seen a rise in some species and in some groups. Leafhoppers and things have been quite the common thing even the weevils have been out and about. Some things since their season is not yet peaked it is not certain if some species have been having it rough or not. In Texas I have seen very few dragonflies. However I did take a day trip to the Broken Bow area and got some really interesting dragons and damsels around. I also went out to Gus Engling early on and got some that I normally see way later. So with this said one of my biggest things I will be looking at are the trends not only of the groups as a whole but which species are more plentiful and which ones are not. I am planning to go to Georgia and Florida and this could be a good thing to look back in the data record and see what had been seen the most of. I always make it a point before on any of my trips or outings to check local, state, or national park data and see what things are the most common and so on. Going out to the swamplands of North America is something I have always wanted to do with my iNatting. I went when I was a kid but I was not doing this so it was kind of a bummer not to have photographic records of things. So most of the trips I take if I have been around are just to pick up the pieces and rekindle that memory and see how it has changed as well as trying to find things I have seen before.

This will be good for in some areas there is very little data in some states so this will give people a chance to pitch in and put some more observations in- in mass. That is another cool thing that I like about BioBlitzes when we do them we get things in big batches and this helps a lot. When one person is out doing a solo mission it can be hard to get a ton of data but the more eyes you have and the more images others take the more the big picture becomes clear. I know I am preaching to choir on this but I like to put all my ideas down to kind of get my thought process together and to understand what the mission is and to remind myself why we do these and what doing it means for our planet and our mission in natural understanding and conservation. I will be doing my part and I will be on the look out. I will be doing some camps with kids at River Legacy however I will be outside and lot and when we are looking for wildlife you can bet I will be looking for odes. Even after my shifts I will be going out and looking around. I am just a BioBlitz loving freak and that is the way I prefer it. Being a freak of nature just makes us awesome. Being a bit weird and mad and obsessive about things are just a few side effects of being awesomely nerdy. This will be most interesting. This is going to be neat. Now don't get me wrong I will take pictures of all I get but more focus on the Odonata species. This shall be most interesting.

Publicado por galactic_bug_man galactic_bug_man, 17 de junio de 2021

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