by Carl Strang
For 24 hours on Friday and Saturday, over 100 field biologists convened at the Kankakee Sands area in Newton County, Indiana, for a bioblitz. The area includes Nature Conservancy prairie and savanna restoration sites and Indiana state nature preserves. The bioblitz, a concentrated effort to identify as many species of organisms as possible, was sponsored by the Nature Conservancy, Purdue University, The Indiana Academy of Science, and a consortium of Indiana colleges.
Though the bioblitz focuses on the central 24 hours, some advance work had been done.
My focus was singing insects. One of the Purdue students volunteered to assist me the first afternoon.
Alyssa’s young ears were a huge help with some of the meadow katydids, which I cannot hear without an electronic aid.
I was prepared to collect extensively if necessary, but fortunately for my preferences we only needed to collect as we saw fit. I collected only 3 insects altogether. The long-spurred wasn’t one of them.
The timing was a little early for many of the singing insects. Meadow-dwelling tree crickets still were nymphs.
They generally were consistent with the black-horned/Forbes’s tree cricket species pair, but I will need to return in some future season to explore further.
We were able to spend some time in savanna and prairie areas.
In the next few posts I’ll share more from the bioblitz.