Discover new Australian species at home with Bush Blitz

By Alex Horvat

15 June 2020

3 minute read

A black and yellow striped Monarch (Danaus plexippus) on a green leaf that was added to the Bush Blitz.

A Monarch (Danaus plexippus) that was added to the Bush Blitz. Image: Thomas Mesaglio (CC BY-NC).

Biodiversity is the variety of life found on Earth, their communities and habitats. This includes plants, animals, fungi and microorganisms. But scientists think we’ve only found and described about 30 per cent of Australia’s estimated 680,000 species!

That’s where Bush Blitz comes in. It’s Australia’s largest species discovery program. It aims to build our knowledge of Australian biodiversity.

Every year, Bush Blitz takes expert taxonomists on exotic expeditions to remote locations. All to find and describe more plant and animal species. But this year, Bush Blitz has organised an online journey. So that means you can join in and help the team from wherever you are!

We can’t promise you’ll discover a new species. But we can guarantee you’ll discover some amazing species living in your very own backyard. And you’ll also connect with your inner naturalist as you learn to identify them. All while giving valuable data to the Atlas of Living Australia!

A person taking a photo of some grass.

You can search for species in your backyard and snap away.

The Atlas of Living Australia

Hosted by us, the Atlas of Living Australia pulls together Australian biodiversity data from multiple sources. This makes identifying fauna and flora accessible and reusable.

From museums and herbariums and the Bush Blitz, the data gathered gives a more detailed picture of Australia’s biodiversity. This lets scientists, policy-makers, environmental planners and industry see the ‘big picture’ of Australian biodiversity. And make important decisions about it.

A small boy looking at a cricket on wood

Uncover the amazing biodiversity that’s in your very own backyard!

Want to help with Bush Blitz?

For the up and coming naturalists

Double Helix is running a Bush Blitz backyard checklist competition. Visit Double Helix to download the activity. Encourage a new generation of naturalists to spot some species for the chance to win a prize!

For the environment enthusiasts

  1. Download the iNaturalist app and create an account.
  2. Search for and join the Backyard Species Discovery with Bush Blitz (Australia) project.
  3. Explore your backyard. Using caution, have a look around for fungi, plants, insects, reptiles or mammals.
  4. Snap a photo! Make sure the photo is clear so experts can help you identify it. But as much as we love seeing puppy and plant pictures, it can’t be a picture of your pet or something that’s been planted.
  5. Upload your finding to the iNaturalist project. But make sure to include the date and location.

Keep adding observations and continue to explore what is in your backyard! Who knows, you might be featured on another blog of ours.

Get snapping

Explore your backyard, street, park or local reserve. Who knows, you might discover the next Australian species!

For more information visit: