The Capital Regional District is hoping families will take on the biodiversity challenge this long weekend by getting out and discovering local plants, animals and fungi. (Black Press Media file photo)

The Capital Regional District is hoping families will take on the biodiversity challenge this long weekend by getting out and discovering local plants, animals and fungi. (Black Press Media file photo)

Stop and smell the flowers: Greater Victorians asked to take on biodiversity challenge

CRD to create dashboard of flora and fauna in region with resident-collected data

Take out the magnifying glass and head into nature this weekend, because the Capital Regional District (CRD) is inviting residents to take on the biodiversity challenge.

From Friday to Monday, people are asked to go out hunting for local plants, animals, bugs and fungi, whether that’s in their backyard, along a nearby beach or on a regional hike. Once found, photos and descriptions can be uploaded onto the iNaturalist app, which houses a global data base of such discoveries.

When complete, the CRD will compile the findings into a dashboard of flora and fauna within the region. Participants will have the chance to win a consultation with Saanich Native Plants on naturalizing their yard or garden, a smartphone macro camera lens and native plant identification guides.

READ ALSO: Central Saanich elementary students lift up environmental sins of the past

The challenge also falls over International Day for Biological Diversity on Saturday and the CRD says it hopes residents are reminded of the importance of preserving nature. Maintaining a diverse natural environment makes ecosystems more resilient to change and helps provide clean air and water and food security to residents, the CRD says.

More information about the challenge can be found at crd.bc.ca.

READ ALSO: White crab found off Sooke coast is never seen in Canada


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