Recording wildlife in the Baltic Triangle

The Baltic Triangle area of Liverpool is not only a vibrant and exciting part of the city, its wildlife also remains largely unexplored. Support us to learn more about the species in the Baltic Triangle by recording your sightings through the iNaturalist app or website.

Liverpool is one of the three pioneer cities for the Urban GreenUP project along with Vallodolid in Spain, and Izmir in Turkey. The scheme aims to renature urban areas, to mitigate the effects of climate change, improve air quality and water management and increase the sustainability of our cities through innovative nature-based solutions. The project is funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 programme.

Examples of the Urban GreenUP’s planned initiatives are:

  • The introduction of green bike and pedestrian routes
  • The installation of parks and urban farming facilities
  • The usage of smart soils and bio-pollutant filters
  • The implementation of sustainable drainage systems which will reduce the impact of floods and for irrigation purposes.

It’s believed that Liverpool’s sustainable drainage system will be able to store 1,500 m3 of rainwater during storms.

A blue tit clinging to a twig covered in lichen

Blue tit by Andy Rouse/2020VISION

How have these green interventions already helped urban wildlife?

The best way to help us answer this question is to a make a record of any wildlife you observe in the Baltic Triangle using the iNaturalist app on your phone or directly on the iNaturalist website. Whether you spot something as common as a gull, snail or dandelion, every record you upload allows the experts to get a clearer picture of the biodiversity present in the Baltic Triangle.

The Urban GreenUP project page on iNaturalist currently has under 300 sightings, which you can view in more detail here. We hope that this figure will be raised into the thousands, but we need your help to get there. The more information we have about wildlife in this area and around the intervention sites, the more the experts can advocate for environmental changes that benefit everyone.

Since establishing a Baltic Triangle project on iNaturalist in early 2020, 128 species have been reported. This includes an interesting mix of marine, coastal and grassland species. The most recorded groups in the Baltic are flowering plants (326 taxa), spiders (80 taxa), beetles (67 taxa) and down in joint-third are birds (67 taxa). For such an industrial and largely urban area this is a really impressive diversity of life!

Close-up of the cone-like head of ribwort plantain with delicate white petals sticking out at all angles

Ribwort plantain by Amy Lewis

A great opportunity to get involved in this part of the UrbanGreenUP project is by taking part in this year’s City Nature Challenge.

The City Nature Challenge is a global event, taking part in more than 400 cities between 30 April and 3 May 2021. Over the four days of the challenge, thousands of people will be coming together to share observations of the nature in their environment using the iNaturalist app.

You don’t have to be an expert or even know the name of the species you’ve seen. Just download the iNaturalist app, take a picture, upload – and share. Experts and fellow observers will be reviewing the information submitted and will verify and update with more details so you can check back in and find out more about the things you have spotted.

This is an exciting opportunity to contribute to a global initiative to map the nature flourishing within urban areas, supporting everything from conservation work to scientific research projects and land management.

We're looking to run some in-person events to support wildlife recording in the Baltic Triangle area, but due to national restrictions these will take place later in the year.