Expedition Singelpark

Scientific research with locals and schools on the biodiversity of the Singelpark in Leiden.

With the project Expedition Singelpark we will do an inventory of the biodiversity in the Singelpark in Leiden together with locals and schools. This circular park of almost 6.5 km around the old city centre of Leiden was created by connecting a series of individual park areas.

Due to the varied character of the different park areas (old cemeteries, traditional parks, the Hortus botanicus, recently constructed playgrounds and dog parks, etcetera) it is expected that the biodiversity is high, but for a large part this is still unknown. For example, the invertebrates (that together form more than half of the biodiversity) are largely unknown. In this project we want to change that by focusing mostly on invertebrates, but also mosses and lichens.

Foto: Marc de Haan
Foto: Yako Joven


The first inventory was on March 25 in the park area that lies against the Vreewijk. On September 10 we were in the Rembrandtpark and on September 29 in the Hortus botanicus.

On Tuesday, April 16, they will come to the historic Groenesteeg cemetery. On that day you can get to know the hidden biodiversity of the cemetery under the guidance of experts. Everyone who is interested is invited to participate in this expedition. You can register for free for the morning program (from 09:30 to 12:30) or the afternoon program (from 14:00 to 17:00). We offer lunch for all participants between 12:30 and 14:00. You can register by sending an email to Maaike in which you indicate how many people you are coming with, whether you want to participate in the morning or afternoon program, and whether you want to have lunch. There is room for a maximum of 20 participants per half day.

Would you rather participate in an expedition during the weekend? On Saturday September 28 we will come to the Energiepark and on Sunday September 29 to the Ankerpark. You can also register for this in advance for free.

As soon as the dates and locations of expeditions in other parts of the Singelpark are known, they will be listed on this webpage.

How does it work?

From March 2023 onwards we repeatedly go “on expedition” in parts of the Singelpark. We will set up a field laboratory with tubes, petri dishes, nets, and microscopes with which the collected specimens can be observed and processed. With the help of experts, the participants learn how and where they can find and identify animals, mosses, and lichens, so that after the expedition they have the knowledge and skills to keep on monitoring nature in the Singelpark by themselves.

Foto: Marc de Haan
Foto: Marc de Haan

How to participate?

Everyone who is interested, of all ages, can participate, although the number of participants is sometimes limited. If and how you can participate will be mentioned with every activity that is being announced. Do you want to help organize an expedition in your neighbourhood? Please contact us!

And after?

In the period after the inventory, the discoveries are elaborated by experts in a partial report that is shared and discussed with the participants. It could be that we can find thousands of species in the entire Singel Park. It could easily take time for each partial report to be completed. In the meantime, the results can be followed via waarneming.nl and Stadsnatuurmeetnet. After all inventories have been completed, a final report will be written with the results of the entire Singelpark.

In this project, the Taxon Foundation collaborates with: Municipality of Leiden, Friends of the Singelpark Foundation, Friends of the Leiden Hortus Foundation, Hortus botanicus Leiden, Grachtwacht, Onder Water in Leiden, Naturalis, and Leiden University.