Results... Amazing.

The City Nature Challenge was once again a HUGE success! Thanks to everyone that participated! Dallas/Fort Worth was a global hotspot for naturalists during this 4 day period -- the numbers show just that.

From April 29 through May 2, 2022, over 1300 naturalists documented around 3427 species in 42,500 observations. Numbers in the "thousands" are hard to envision, so here's a challenge: how many organisms can you name off the top of your head? How many bird species? How many plants? Just in the 10 counties that make up the DFW metroplex, we documented loads of species!!! If you want to dig through the results, here's the project page:

Let's look at some of the specific species documented... We documented 196 species of birds:
We documented 420 species of beetles:
We documented 85 grass species:
Play with these filters -- see how many different species of your favorite group of organisms that were documented in just these four days. Tremendous!

Some of the massive champions of the city nature challenge are the identifiers -- these are the individuals that spend time looking through observations, adding comments or identifications to the unknowns, welcoming new naturalists to the community, and learning a lot in the process. Big time thanks to these folks:

How did we compare with the rest of the state and the rest of the world? Here are the umbrella projects for the state ( and for the world ( State-wide, we were #1 in observations and #2 in both species and observers. Globally, we were #3 in observations (excluding the 'global project' for the naturalists that didn't have a city that participated in the City Nature Challenge), #5 in species, and #8 in observers. Amazing!

Let's talk relevancy... Who cares about these numbers? Obviously, we do! But more than that, we can use these numbers to justify that not only is there biodiversity here in the metroplex, but there is also an active constituency of naturalists that seek out and need this biodiversity. I use these numbers to demonstrate the need for wild areas in parks. Engaging with nature is a recreational act just as playing soccer or having a picnic is. Public park managers need to realize this and manage areas for us, and for the biodiversity that seeks out parks as refuges. Nature is necessary, and we've got the data to show it!

Huge thanks to all that participated in this city nature challenge. Go ahead and mark the calendars for next year: April 28 - May 1, 2023! Make sure to cancel all work/family/personal obligations to go outside and engage with nature!

Posted on 13 May, 2022 17:23 by sambiology sambiology


Great job to all who participated!

The one disadvantage to having the city nature challenge around the same time each year, it skews the total number of observations much higher during the challenge. Something that might actually be more common in another part of year might have many more observations during the challenge. I’m not sure how to resolve this other than having other challenges that might occur at different times of year… but how many people want to observe in the middle of Texas summer?

Posted by observerjosh about 2 years ago

IS there a filter to tell which county had the most observations, observers and species? Yes, I'm competitive.

Posted by donyoung about 2 years ago

100% agree that low-density rec use like observing nature and birding is a recreational act, but park planners seem to like to squeeze as many sports fields, zip lines, yurts, boat ramps, golf courses, etc into their master plans for what remaining green space we have, so I think this data is super important. I just wish the nature challenge was about a month later because then all the dragonflies are out (they seem like they're off to a slow start this year, or maybe I'm just impatient).

Posted by jblinde about 2 years ago

I think the idea of having a bioblitz the same time every year, over a course of years, adds information about change over time. And that's valuable information. Such a protocol is used by Audubon in the Christmas bird count and Cornell in the Great Backyard Bird Count. But that doesn't rule out having a fall bioblitz or a monthly bioblitz. There'd be more participation in a semi-annual bioblitz, I think.

Posted by jsuplick about 2 years ago

@donyoung, neither am I. :-) When looking at the observations for the City Nature Challenge 2022 project, change the "place" field in the filter to be whatever county you're interested in.

Posted by jsuplick about 2 years ago

Well, we will have a Fall "Socially Distant" bioblitz again this year!
It'll be a competition among the different areas in DFW. :)

And yeah, the timing is always a challenge globally for bioblizes.... It's a pretty good time for Texas and California, but for the rest of the world...not so much. :-/

Posted by sambiology about 2 years ago

@jsuplick I'm not seeing a place field in DFW.

Posted by donyoung about 2 years ago

@donyoung, email me at and I'll share some screenshots.

Posted by jsuplick about 2 years ago

Amazing! Looking forward to our fall DFW bioblitz ... and to next year's City Nature Challenge!

Posted by kathrynwells333 about 2 years ago

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