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BioBlitz Identifies 859 Species in Saguaro National Park, and Counting …

Saguaro National Park, Arizona–When the clock stopped at noon on Saturday, more than 170 scientists and 2,000 students had collected or identified 859 species in the 94,000-acre park. But as National Geographic Vice president for Research, Conservation, and Exploration John Francis noted, it will take years before the final tally is in — researchers bagged...

Saguaro National Park, Arizona–When the clock stopped at noon on Saturday, more than 170 scientists and 2,000 students had collected or identified 859 species in the 94,000-acre park.

But as National Geographic Vice president for Research, Conservation, and Exploration John Francis noted, it will take years before the final tally is in — researchers bagged or bottled thousands of specimens for detailed study in the laboratory. And if previous BioBlitzes are anything to go by, not only will the final tally be several hundred species more than what was recorded on Saturday, but there may well be one or two new species to the park, if not to science.

But after the 24-hour inventory, here’s what was confirmed to be living in Saguaro National Park: amphibians (3), birds (86), fungi (205), invertebrates (190), mammals (22), reptiles (27), and vascular plants (325).

12418031_10153900711084116_8462971761216697621_nDavid Braun is director of outreach with the digital and social media team illuminating the National Geographic Society’s explorer, science, and education programs.

He edits National Geographic Voices, hosting a global discussion on issues resonating with the Society’s mission and major initiatives. Contributors include grantees and Society partners, as well as universities, foundations, interest groups, and individuals dedicated to a sustainable world. More than 50,000 readers have participated in 10,000 conversations.

Braun also directs the Society side of the Fulbright-National Geographic Digital Storytelling Fellowship

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Meet the Author

David Max Braun
More than forty years in U.S., UK, and South African media gives David Max Braun global perspective and experience across multiple storytelling platforms. His coverage of science, nature, politics, and technology has been published/broadcast by the BBC, CNN, NPR, AP, UPI, National Geographic, TechWeb, De Telegraaf, Travel World, and Argus South African Newspapers. He has published two books and won several journalism awards. In his 22-year career at National Geographic he was VP and editor in chief of National Geographic Digital Media, and the founding editor of the National Geographic Society blog, hosting a global discussion on issues resonating with the Society's mission and initiatives. He also directed the Society side of the Fulbright-National Geographic Digital Storytelling Fellowship, awarded to Americans seeking the opportunity to spend nine months abroad, engaging local communities and sharing stories from the field with a global audience. A regular expert on National Geographic Expeditions, David also lectures on storytelling for impact. He has 120,000 followers on social media: Facebook  Twitter  LinkedIn