Hakai Institute

Joined: Jun 22, 2020 Last Active: Nov 30, 2022 iNaturalist Canada

The Hakai Institute conducts long-term scientific research at locations on the coastal margin of British Columbia, Canada. Our ecological observatories are located on Calvert Island on the Central Coast, and Quadra Island in the Discovery Islands.

We've joined iNaturalist to both contribute findings from our biodiversity work—such as BioBlitzes with partners like @smithsonian_marinegeo, which leverage the knowledge of taxonomic experts—and to engage community observations from the areas where we are privileged to work. We are especially interested in encouraging community observations of sea stars to help us track sea star wasting disease, some of which will be submitted to and uploaded on this account.

The majority of our observations are from BioBlitzes conducted at the Calvert Island Ecological Observatory. We collaborate with world-leading taxonomic experts, and many of our observations have since been successfully DNA barcoded to support their identification. Specimens are housed at the Florida Museum of Natural History, the Natural History Museum of LA County, and the Royal BC Museum.

We are uploading thousands of these BioBlitz records using a bulk uploading process developed by our friends at @smithsonian_marinegeo. Each observation will include much, if not all, of the associated metadata and photos taken during collection. Because of the rapid nature of these BioBlitzes, not all key ID characteristics will be featured in photographs. There are bound to be technical errors as we go, so your patience is appreciated!

• Watch our Hakai Bioblitz video about our first BioBlitz with the Smithsonian MarineGEO team to learn more: https://www.hakai.org/hakai-bioblitz

• Read about the subsequent DNA work in our blog, Building the Library of Life: https://www.hakai.org/storymap/lifelibrary/index.html

• Photography setup for MarineGEO BioBlitz images: Usually, we use a 60 mm macro lens on an SLR with two receiver flashes. We shoot handheld somewhere between f/11 to f/22 to try to get the whole animal in focus. We built a shallow glass "tank" and raise it with petri dishes off a background made from a piece of black velvet. Sometimes, we post-process in Lightroom to remove some of the particles in the water from the background.

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