I had a very productive week, I did quite a bit of office work through out the week. We are trying to get a grant on nature-based programs, Alex and I pitched in amazing ideas to put it all together. This grant would highly contribute to our avian bird programs, as well as taking youth communities into our public lands. Alex and I are excited to have successfully communicated to several schools and we already have set up dates for indoor and outdoor outreach with schools around the area (yayy!) However, I got to do quite a bit of field work, which I could always use extra Vitamin D. We collected dust particles from randomly set up cans, 3 cans were lined vertically and we had a total of 100+ cans to collect, exchange for empty ones and record the quantity at the end. This will allow the New Mexico scientists to research sedimentation movement (good hot spot to do so since The Great Sand Dunes are right around the corner from this site). Another fieldwork done this week was shorebird bird watching test with our BLM fantastic birder, Lisa. We went over the survey routes Alex and I will be taking over the summer and great tips to ID them. In Blanca Wetlands that same day we observed greater yellow legs, long-billed dowitcher, peeps, unfortunately no snowy plovers were on sight that day, we were a week early to see them in their regular migration time frame. On the bright side, Lisa enlightened me with an observation. You probably thought the picture above was of a bird nest, ah-ha well that was me this entire time. What that really is is a chubby, well-eaten, small faced, porcupine! We observed 2 of them really close together in trees which it is exactly their microhabitat. Cutest thing I’ve seen in a while, besides of course our beautiful avian species but I was overwhelmed to see them.
Fun fact: The wind felt like it was blowing 30 mph (in reality was like 12 mph), it was 99.99% cloud cover, the day before even snowed in town, peaks were fully covered in snow, but interestingly enough, weather conditions were extremely cold for frogs to be calling. It made no sense in my mind, interesting behavior to me and maybe to all of you big fan herpetologists that are reading this part. Another successful week down, and more to go! Here we go!