Parks For Pollinators BioBlitz Underway In PBC

Participants work their way through the butterfly garden.

The National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) recently launched a nationwide campaign to bring awareness on the loss of pollinators — animals that play a vital role in every ecosystem. Palm Beach County Parks & Recreation is getting involved in the campaign during September by participating in the BioBlitz program.

The Okeeheelee Nature Center was one of those sites and hosted a BioBlitz event on Friday, Sept. 2, inviting the public to join.

“We had 15 adults and five kids participate in the public program on Friday,” Okeeheelee Nature Center Manager Emilie Travis said. “As of Tuesday, Sept. 6, Palm Beach County Parks & Recreation has recruited 48 observers participating in the BioBlitz. Mikie Green, our Okee-Teen volunteer, is No. 1 with 64 species of pollinators documented for the 2022 Parks for Pollinators BioBlitz.”

This citizen science program is all about education and awareness. It engages the public while sharing new ways to help protect the environment. Each BioBlitz targets different species for different reasons.

“BioBlitzes are typically organized to occur in a defined time frame during an ideal time of year to maximize species presence and accurately report the biodiversity for the region,” Travis explained. “By using the iNaturalist app, it identifies the flora or fauna [plants or animals]. Plus, it stores all observations into a large international database.”

While this is the third year for local participation, the national campaign launched back in 2018. To learn more about the BioBlitz program, visit

The Okeeheelee Nature Center is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year. The facility is home to more than 20 different species of animal ambassadors and provides a variety of programs and encounters for all ages. The grounds also include more than two miles of walking trails through a pine flatwood habitat interspersed with wetlands. To learn more, visit or call (561) 233-1400.

Photos by Sydell Schein and Stephanie Surrena