More than 100 people took part in the fifth annual BioBlitz at the Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust Headquarters, Banovallum House in Horncastle. On Friday 9 July and Saturday 10 July, naturalists and members of the public spent 24 hours searching for and identifying as many different species as possible.
Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust Public Relations Officer, Rachel Shaw, said: "We are delighted with how many species were recorded during the event. In 2010, the year declared by the UN as International Year of Biodiversity, it is a timely reminder of how much wildlife, how much biodiversity, lives in our towns and gardens.
"The grounds of Banovallum House include lawns, flower beds, mature trees, meadows, a pond and a small river but cover just one hectare. Within this small area, about the size of a rugby pitch, we managed to find and identify 565 different species in just 24 hours. All together, a total of 961 different species have been recorded in the grounds of Banovallum House. Many of these are species that are all around us but without making a special effort to look we just don’t notice them."
Highlights of the discoveries made at the BioBlitz included:
- The little pond skater (Gerris argentatus) a pond dwelling insect with long legs that walks on the surface of the water. Not previously seen at Banovallum House, this species is very rare in Lincolnshire and rare nationally.
- The wasp Cleptes semiauratus, only 6mm long, metallic blue, red and orange, and parasitic on sawfly larvae. It is nationally scarce and previously only recorded in Lincolnshire on three occasions in 1941, 1950 and 1992.
- 161 species of moth, 91 of which that hadn’t previously been recorded at Banovallum House and, including four species of the large and impressive hawk-moths: elephant hawk-moth, privet hawk-moth, eyed hawk-moth and poplar hawk-moth.
- Four species of bat: common pipistrelle, soprano pipistrelle, daubenton’s and noctule. Noctule bat was a new record for the site.
- The lesser water boatman (Hesperocorixa linnei), a new record for Banovallum House for a species that is associated with ponds that are drying out, perhaps indicating how dry the weather has been recently.
Over 24 hours, 565 different species were found and identified.
6 mosses and liverworts
196 flowering plants
20 slugs and snails
1 millipedes and centipedes
6 dragonflies and damselflies
39 true bugs
7 true flies
5 crustaceans (woodlice, & freshwater shrimp)
Of the species recorded, 200 (35%) had not been seen in the gardens before.
The Lincolnshire BioBlitz is organised by the Lincolnshire Biodiversity Partnership, Lincolnshire Naturalists’ Union and the Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust. Previous BioBlitz events at Banovallum House recorded 476 species in 2009, 357 in 2008, 326 in 2007, and 250 in 2006.
It is part of a programme of BioBlitz events taking place across the UK in celebration of the UN’s International Year of Biodiversity.
See: The Lincolnshire BioBlitz pages of our website