From Quad to City: Discover Wildlife in the Greater Manchester City Nature Challenge 2024!

by | Apr 19, 2024 | Environmental Sustainability (ES) | 0 comments

As outlined in the University’s Sustainable Future Strategy, we aim to make our campus a space for wildlife to flourish and diversify, whilst also increasing opportunities for our community to engage with nature. Interacting with nature has consistently shown to have a positive relationship with mindfulness, creativity, improved self-esteem, and reduced stress levels. Therefore, as we approach the end of the final semester, the Greater Manchester City Nature Challenge 2024 (26th April – 29th April) comes at an ideal time for us all to prioritise our mental and physical wellbeing.  

Organised by The Wildlife Trust for Lancashire, Manchester and North Merseyside, Manchester Museum, Manchester Parks Team and Greater Manchester Local Records Centre, the 4-day bioblitz provides the perfect opportunity to explore the diversity of local wildlife, all within the vibrant atmosphere of our city. The challenge takes place on iNaturalist, a free and easy to use app, where users can upload photos of wildlife, from plants, animals and fungi. Using clever image classification feature, the app will suggest potential species classification for your sighting, before being uploaded to the global database, where it can be verified by other users.  

To help you get kick-started and familiarised with iNaturalist, the Faculty is hosting a Spring bioblitz at the Michael Smith Quad on the 25 April, 12:30 – 14:30pm. Originally an uninspiring lawn, the Michael Smith Quad has been transformed into a fantastic habitat designed to enhance biodiversity, now home to Bee Orchids, frogs, birds and more. The team looking after the quad have slowly developed the area with natural hedging, pond clearing, wildflower meadows and grow-your-own beds, becoming a beautiful addition to our outdoor spaces on campus. It will not be one to miss! 

All sightings made during the Michael Smith Quad bioblitz will automatically be uploaded to our year-round biodiversity on campus project on iNaturalist, contributing to conservation efforts at the University. Signing up as a member to the project allows you to stay up to date with the latest observations from other users and key events on campus.  

To find out more about Environmental Sustainability: visit the Faculty’s intranet page, website, read our newsletter or contact For more information on Environmental Sustainability at the University watch this short film or visit their website.