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City Nature Challenge

by Kirsten Palmier

The City Nature Challenge (CNC) is an annual event that was first created and run in 2016 by the Community Science teams at the California Academy of Sciences and the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County (NHM). Since its inception, the CNC has grown into an international event where cities from around the world participate in a four-day global bioblitz at the end of April. You might be wondering, what is a bioblitz? Basically, using apps like iNaturalist, folks head out and document as many species as possible within a defined time frame. The CNC aims at documenting nature in urban environments, such as the City of Regina, with a few goals in mind: observations can be used for planning purposes, assessments and defining hot spots of urban biodiversity; it gives folks a chance to connect with nature literally in their backyard; and it's a super fun event that anyone with a phone or camera can take part in.  

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Nature Regina has joined forces with other local nature groups including the Friends of Wascana Marsh, Nature Saskatchewan, the Royal Saskatchewan Museum and the Nature Conservancy of Canada for the past three years to run the CNC in the Regina Area and will continue to participate in 2024. Since Nature Regina began participating in 2021, more than 2900 observations have been made of over 280 species.  


Thanks to the hundreds of participants who have helped document urban biodiversity! Who knew Regina had so much wildlife at their fingertips? I promise there are even more species out there for us to find, as some are harder to find than others. For example, one of which includes a species at-risk, the Yellow-banded Bumble Bee.  


Be sure to keep an eye out for the next upcoming City Nature Challenge near you! 

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