The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is considered by some to be one of the most biodiverse places in North America. It is here, in the midst of such species richness, that Discover Life in America (DLIA) is conducting an ongoing project to inventory all species that exist in the Park. The All Taxa Biodiversity Inventory (ATBI) seeks to inventory every species of living organisms in Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The project continues to develop checklists, reports, maps, databases, GIS tools, and natural history profiles that describe the biology of this rich landscape to a wide audience.
To date, the ATBI has found 7391 new species within the park, including 922 that are new to science.
Next month, Discover Life in America is proud to be putting on the 15th annual All Taxa Biodiversity Inventory Conference. The conference will be held over three days - March 22-24th - at the Glenstone Lodge in beautiful Gatlinburg, Tennessee. Although the main focus of the event is the presentation of scientific ATBI research, the conference will include field trips in the Smokies, nature hikes, photography, fund-raising auctions, and book signings. The conference is open to scientists, researchers, educators, the press, and interested members of the public.
Some of the field trips scheduled for this year include The Best Wildflower Hike in the Smokies with Janet Rock, GPS Basics, and Animal Tracking.
World renowned biologist Dr. E.O. Wilson will give the keynote address at Discover Life in America's ATBI Conference on March 23rd. Edward O. Wilson was recently called “one of the most important biological theorists since Darwin” by The New York Times. There will also be a chance to see and hear Dr. Wilson on March 24, 2012 at 6 p.m. at the Knoxville Museum of Art with a "Special Evening with E.O. Wilson," which is a fundraiser for Discover Life in America.
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