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Limelight Rainforest 5K

Tropical Leaves
Copy of Something Bug is coming_edited_e

Population Biology Foundation is proud to present Limelight Rainforest 5K, our race to identify 5000 insects in four months. This groundbreaking project will provide a critical resource - a catalog of insect biodiversity - for monitoring, reporting, and verifying rainforest diversity in the Amazon basin. 
We can’t save biodiversity until we know more about species and where they are found.  Our knowledge of much of the world’s biodiversity is surprisingly limited especially for the smallest but often most critical components of our ecosystems.  Insects are particularly challenging to monitor; they are an incredibly diverse group that provides crucial services for the planet, such as pollination.  Insects also respond rapidly to changes in local environments, making them fast and accurate indicators of the effectiveness of actions made to improve biodiversity; if we want to save our forests and make sure they stay healthy, we need to know our insects!

The Limelight Rainforest 5K project will catalog 5000 insect taxa from the rainforests of the Amazon, giving scientists the dictionary they need to protect the most biodiverse habitats on Earth. This dictionary of insect biodiversity will be available to everyone via the Barcode of Life portal (, facilitating humanity's ability to preserve and protect the rainforests of the Amazon basin.

Identifying insects is a critical but often overlooked part of environmental monitoring. In preparing for the XPRIZE Rainforest finals competition, we discovered a critical knowledge gap. We discovered that the vast majority of insects had not been cataloged in the Amazon basin. Unlike mammals and birds, which are intensively studied and cataloged, we found a surprising - and frankly depressing - lack of suitable information on Amazonian insects. Our goal is to make a major impact - to catalog almost as many species of Amazonian insects in 4 months as there are species of mammals on earth!

To learn more and support our work, please visit our Kickstarter page.

Moths from insect traps
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