The Cape RADD Big Bad BioBlitz!
Attention all SCUBA Divers, Snorkelers and ocean lovers! Cape RADD are excited to be invited to the Cape Town Dive festival as a competition organizer this year! This is Cape RADD’s first time at the Dive festival and we will be running a BioBlitz extravaganza over the two-day event in Cape Town. This is a sponsored prize event too so there will be a top banana prize to be won! BUT what is a BioBlitz? I hear you ponder. Well hopefully this short blog will help explain and entice you to come join in the festivities on April 28-29.
What does BioBlitz mean?
‘Bio’ meaning ‘life’ and ‘Blitz’ meaning ‘to do something quickly and intensively’ combined make ‘BioBlitz’… genius!
What is a BioBlitz?
This is a fun collaborative group survey with the objective of discovering and recording as many species of animals, plants, fungi or whatever it is you want to record as possible. This occurs in a defined location, over a set period. A BioBlitz usually comprises of a mixture of wildlife experts and members of the public working together, making it a form of Citizen Science and a great community activity, giving members of the public an opportunity to get involved and contribute to genuine scientific research.
Why do a BioBlitz?
This surveying technique is a fantastic way for scientists to gain a quick snap shot of the diversity and abundance found in the specific area with the help of many eyes and hands as assistance, whilst engaging the public in a subject species or habitat area.
This is a great platform to introduce and get the public directly involved with biological surveys, and we all get to talk with fellow marine enthusiasts and get our fish geek on!
It also breaks down any barriers or preconceptions of marine science and helps non-biologists engage with science in a way they may not have thought possible. BioBlitz help create a greater awareness as to the role of marine biology and science in the protection and conservation of our amazing marine environment many of us spend our free time enjoying.
The Cape RADD Big Bad BioBlitz will be monitoring the marine protected area of the Table Mountain National Park along the Cape Peninsula with survey sites both inside and outside the no take zones.
Our aim is to get as many people as possible involved and engaged in SCUBA diving or snorkelling survey techniques, bringing the veteran SCUBA divers and the first timers together to share their knowledge and enthusiasm for all things fishy whilst collecting great data, which will eventually contribute to assisting with management techniques to conserve and protect the amazing places we all love to dive.
A BioBlitz is also an important way to develop individuals as divers, snorkelers or just super keen ocean lovers and a way to engage with individuals and influence their interaction with the natural world. This is a key value of Cape RADD (Research and Diver Development) and we want all our participants to have fun and be inspired to enjoy the natural world and contribute to its conservation. Some of our goals for this competition are:
- Participants will develop a greater understanding of local wildlife and habitats and gain first-hand experience of how biological recording works
- Participants will develop their fish identification skills one species at a time!
- Participants will become more aware of the wildlife and conservation issues in their local community
- Participants are strongly encouraged to continue to record their wildlife sightings after the event and send them into Cape RADD’s ongoing baseline database.
The Cape RADD moto is ‘Stop counting your dives and make your dives count!’ So come and join us and be a marine biologist for the day.
If you would like to get involved with the Cape Town Dive Festival and Cape RADD’s Big Bad Bioblitz then head to http://www.signupgenius.com/go/30e0b4fa9ac2ea2fd0-cape1 to sign up!