Minnesotans can learn from biologists and naturalists while helping scientists document species diversity at an upcoming BioBlitz event on Saturday, June 18 at Cedar Rock Scientific and Natural Area in Redwood County.
The BioBlitz is a chance for the public to learn from and assist scientists and naturalists as they inventory the living organisms inhabiting Cedar Rock SNA in a one-day field study.
“The event serves three primary functions: to provide a learning experience for anyone interested, to teach us more about this particular prairie, and to give researchers vital information about the species they study,” SNA specialist Brad Bolduan said. “Past SNA events studied organisms like plants, dragonflies, spiders, fungus and butterflies. Every year, the pool of experts present varies.”
While the event is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m., surveys may occur throughout the day, and visitors are free to come and go as they wish. The BioBlitz will occur rain or shine.
“People of all experience levels are welcome,” Bolduan said. “We only require curiosity and enthusiasm.”
Long pants, socks or tick gaiters and appropriate footwear are strongly encouraged. Participants should plan ahead as there are no shelters, drinking water or restrooms at the SNA.
Located near the bottom of the Minnesota River Valley in Redwood County, Cedar Rock SNA has diverse native plant communities. Much of the 62-acre site has rock outcrops that were recently cleared of trees, which revealed cliffs that are now visible from the road. Other habitats onsite include prairies, a stream and ponds.
Directions to Cedar Rock SNA:
From Delhi, drive east on County 9 for 1.5 miles. Turn north on Kenwood Ave. (County Road 17). Drive on County Road 17 for 1.1 miles. Park on the east side of the road.
Many additional events are scheduled throughout the summer. The full schedule of events is available on the DNR website.
Funding for this event was provided by the Minnesota Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund as recommended by the Legislative-Citizen Commission on Minnesota Resources. The trust fund is a permanent fund constitutionally established by Minnesotans to assist in the protection, conservation, preservation and enhancement of the state’s air, water, land, fish, wildlife and other natural resources.