Monday, January 4, 2010

International Year of Biodiversity Challenge

I have a rather eclectic stash of unread books hanging around here so my initial thought was, of course, I can do the International Year of Biodiversity Challenge. Then I had a little trouble figuring out which books I could realistically fit into this challenge, especially as the books that fit this one are not highly likely to fit other challenges (making this harder to complete!). But I did pick a handful that I think will do.

The different challenges encompassed by this challenge are:

Basic: 3 books on any biodiversity topic.

Biomes: 3 books about major world ecosystems: open ocean; coral reefs; lakes and rivers; arctic tundra; boreal forests; temperate forests; tropical forests; savannah; grassland/steppe; deserts.

Branches: 3 books on different life forms: plants; fungi; invertebrates (including insects); reptiles and amphibians; birds; mammals.

Bye-bye: 2 books about endangered or extinct species or about extinction or conservation.

Back yard: Buy 2 or more field guides to your local flora & fauna and get to know your neighbours.

Biodiversity Bonanza: One of each of the above!

I think I'm going to shoot for the Basic level so I can read all across the board without commiting to reading from all of the options.

This challenge also has some small "field trips" associated with it which might be fun to do with my kids. We'll have to see what's available but this sounds to me like a great way to finally get us up to the US National Whitewater Center both for fun and education.

Level 1—Indoorsy: Visit a natural history museum or watch a documentary series on biodiversity (e.g. Planet Earth)

Level 2—Outdoorsy: Take a guided walk or hike in a local park. Check park system websites for schedules.

Level 3—Full Granola: Design your own field trip to go birding, botanizing, field-journaling, or whatever you like. Alternatively, join a local natural history club, or take a course in natural history online or at a college or community centre.

Anyway, here's the list of what I pulled from my shelves to read for this one:

1. The Earth Moved by Amy Stewart
2. Great Lakes Nature by Mary Blocksma
3. Suburban Safari by Hannah Holmes

I also have a few in reserve, all centered around the Great Lakes since the place of my heart is found up on the shores of Lake Huron in UP Michigan: The Fourth Coast by Mary Blocksma, Great Lakes Suite by David McFadden, The Living Great Lakes by Jerry Dennis. These could very possibly sub in for the above as the spirit moves me.


  1. Those are great books, Kristen! I look forward to your reviews. Happy reading!

  2. You could probably use two of those with the science book challenge at That gives you the puff of accomplishment when you polish two birds with a stone, or whatever.

    By the way, your button still says 2009.

  3. I loved Suburban Safari! It helps that it's set in Maine, where I'm originally from, of course. :)

    - Christy

  4. The Earth Moved was great - and I HATE gardening!


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