Community, Outdoors, Springfield

100+plants, animals logged during Nature Challenge

SPRINGFIELD — Thousands of people around the globe last weekend participated in the 2024 City Nature Challenge. During the four-day challenge, citizens upload photos of wild plants and animals in a competition that contributes to a database of urban biodiversity that informs environmental research, land management practices, and conservation efforts of sensitive species. Willamalane hosted its own City Nature Challenge event at Georgia Pacific Natural Area on April 27, where attendees recorded more than 100 observations of plants and animals. Willamalane will use this data to inform land management of the natural area, which is co-owned by Springfield Utility Board, City of Springfield, and Willamalane. Neighboring the Middle Fork Willamette River, Georgia Pacific Natural Area contains floodplains, wetlands, and riparian forests that provide a unique complex of habitat types and recreational opportunities. The area is home to sensitive species like the Northwestern pond turtle. While the City Nature Challenge competition takes place during set days in spring, anyone can continue to make observations throughout the year using the iNaturalist app and their smartphone.



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