Back in June, photographers from all over took part in Nature Photography Day, and hundreds also took part in NANPA’s iNaturalist Nature Photography Day bioblitz, an eleven-day community-science event to find, identify, and document as many species as possible in a given area. Last week, we met one of three bioblitz prize winners, Gouri Prakash. Today, we introduce NANPA member and volunteer Deborah Roy, whose name came up in a random drawing for second prize from all the participants who submitted at least ten “research grade” observations of different species during the bioblitz.
The prize was nice, but why go through the effort of documenting your observations? Why did Roy take part in the Nature Photography Day Bioblitz? “I participated this year, as well as in 2021, because I enjoy learning the identification of a wide variety of flora and fauna that I come across while out on hikes and even simply walking around my property,” Roy wrote. “When I find a new species I like to learn whether it is a native species or not and then read all about the natural history of my new discovery. I also love being a community scientist and playing a role in helping to identify when and where species are occurring throughout the year.”
One example of Roy’s sightings is pictured here. “This beautiful iridescent blue-green dogbane leaf beetle (Chrysochus auratus) caught my eye while several of them were enjoying some hemp dogbane (Apocynum cannabinum) leaves,” she told us. “It was a beautiful scene, as a wide variety of butterflies and moths flurried around them nectaring from the plants.
Sit. Observe. Learn.
One of her favorite things to do is sit, observe and learn about species. “I cannot begin to tell you how much the iNaturalist app has taught me,” she says. “When out on hikes with others, I am able to easily identify a variety of flora and fauna from what I have learned and this amazes those I am with. I highly recommend checking out this app.”
Frank Gallagher is a landscape and nature photographer based in the Washington, DC, area who specializes in providing a wide range of photograph services to nonprofit organizations. He serves as NANPA’s Interim Marketing and Communications Coordinator and manages NANPA’s blog. He can be found online at frankgallagherphotography.com or on Instagram @frankgallagherfoto.
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