Need a good excuse to spend time enjoying flowers? Residents in the Quad Cities and surrounding counties (Scott, Rock Island, Muscatine, Henry and Mercer) can head outside and take photos of any insect seen visiting a flower during the first annual Backyard Bee Blitz July 8-10.

During the Backyard Bee Blitz, volunteers log the species of bees and other insects that are seen visiting flowers and their location during a specified timeframe. Both experienced and new nature spotters are encouraged to venture out on a nature walk and participate in the Blitz. 

Taking part is easy; just go outside anytime on July 8, 9 or 10, take a few insect photos, and upload them to the iNaturalist app, available in the Google Play and the App Store. Photos don’t need to be uploaded immediately but must be dated correctly when uploaded. For a step-by-step tutorial on how to join the project, click here.