skip to main content

HCPSS Students to Expand Park Species List at 2017 BioBlitz

Posted: May 17th, 2017

Howard County middle school students are expanding an ever-increasing park species list for the Belmont Manor and Historic Park in Elkridge, Maryland. The BioBlitz program, offered in partnership with the Howard County Conservancy, links to HCPSS science, technology, engineering and math curriculum programs by using comprehensive GPS and mapping applications.

The latest additions to the species list will be unveiled at the 2017 BioBlitz, which began today and continues through Thursday, May 18. A BioBlitz event for elementary school students is scheduled for October 2017.

“I applaud BioBlitz for giving students a deep understanding of the importance of biodiversity across the county and across the world,” said Acting HCPSS Superintendent Michael J. Martirano. “I also appreciate the strong partnership between the school system and the conservancy to provide young people with an opportunity to experience the scientific process as they discover, count and map the local ecosystem.”

At BioBlitz, students from Bonnie Branch and Murray Hill middle schools will work alongside Maryland master naturalists, Maryland master gardeners and Howard County Conservancy volunteers as they identify birds, plants, mammals, insects, trees and more at the Belmont site. As of January 2017, students have identified more than 300 species. Student-collected data will be available to park visitors and the community via the iNaturalist mobile app, an international biodiversity database.

The Howard County Conservancy offers environmental education programs for children and adults throughout the year at Mt. Pleasant farm in Woodstock and Belmont Manor and Historic Park in Elkridge.