Now in its fourth year, City Nature Challenge is a multi-city, global event and organisers are calling on all nature lovers and citizen scientists to discover and record the wildlife in our cities.
There is an abundance of nature in every city just waiting to be discovered and enjoyed – from parks to parklets, large wooded areas to allotments.
As cities worldwide grow ever more densely populated, these green spaces are invaluable in helping people to feel connected with the natural world.
Seven UK cities are taking part in this years event, four more than last year, and all will be competing against one another to see which city can collect the most data.
The UK cities will then join forces to compete on the global scale against over 160 cities from competing countries around the world.
The UK cities are Bristol and Bath City Region, London, Newcastle, Glasgow, Greater Manchester, Liverpool, and Leicester. A full list of the cities taking part can be found on the City Nature Challenge website.
“Ordinary people have been watching and monitoring nature in the UK for hundreds of years, making our little cluster of islands one of the most well-observed areas in the world,” says Matt Postles, deputy director of Bristol Natural History Consortium.
Participants can use the free app iNaturalist to take pictures of the wildlife in their city and upload it onto the global database.
This rich data will help authorities make informed conservation decisions to facilitate a sustainable society where both people and planet thrive.
The iNaturalist app features photo recognition to help you identify what you are looking at, as well as inviting you to join an online community of fellow wildlife enthusiasts to sense check each identification.
“Conservationists, researchers, planners and policy makers need more complete, up to date information to make better-informed decisions to secure a future for local wildlife,” adds Postles.
“City Nature Challenge is a great opportunity for people to have a go and get involved in what is a really fun and exciting activity, whether you are an expert or total beginner.”
Wildlife pictures can be submitted from Friday 26 April to Monday 29 April ready for identification between Tuesday 30 April to Sunday 5 May.