Identifying Species

In order to collect species records you need to be able to identify the species you find. For many taxonomic groups this is easier said than done but there is help at hand.

Local naturalists

Local naturalists will often be delighted to take part in your BioBlitz identifying specimens and/or leading walks and activities. (Be aware that different naturalists will have different comfort zones so don’t pressure people into leading public activities if they aren’t confident doing so.) The greater the diversity of expertise you have at your event, the more species you’ll be able to identify and record.

To find naturalists contact your local naturalists club or society, your local Wildlife Trust and the science department of any local Universities. Many naturalists have a lot of requests to get involved in BioBlitzes so get in there early and don’t be offended if they can’t make your event.


If you don’t have the expertise there on the day to identify a particular specimen, take a photo and upload it to iSpot where an online community of naturalists will look through and see if they can identify it. iSpot can even set you up a special tag for your event.

Online Keys

If you are struggling to find anyone out there who can ID your specimen It is well worth pursuing further as you might have found something really interesting! There are a plethora of online keys that you can work your way through listed on regular BioBlitzer Richard Comont’s excellent blog.


Field guides are really useful on the day but be aware that most only have a small selection of species – don’t just pick the one that looks closest!

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