WWOOFing Part 8: Biodiversity Cataloging in the Great Outdoors
As I’ve wrote about a few weeks ago in my post about Fiery Gizzard my WWOOF hosts Jonathan is an ecologist and independent biodiversity specialist. As such he is involved in an ongoing cataloguing project of the plant and animal species on the southern Cumberland Plateau, both informally and related to his work with BioBlitz, a species inventory project sponsored by National Geographic. I’ll be writing more on the BioBlitz project in a later post. But anyway, this area of southern Cumberland Plateau is an extremely important temperate deciduous forest that is among the highest in conservation value due to the biodiversity that lies within the multiple ecosystems and the variety of habitats it supports; the immediate area is renowned for its diverse amphibian, terrestrial snail, and plant communities as well as its habitat for migratory songbirds.
This all means that he often needs to get outside check stuff out… and I get to tag along. Yup, life is tough. In the past two months we’ve been on multiple outings looking for American Woodcocks at the airport, hunting for harbinger of spring, checking for salamanders on a night hike on Sewanee Domain, and exploring the forests on- and off-trail. Below are just a few pictures from our outings over the past two months that show some of the findings and also highlight what beauty there is on this land.