The past couple weeks here in Colorado have been busy with wrapping up field season and continuing the analysis of the remainder field data. In the past weeks I had the opportunity to help fisheries and hydrology personnel at the Kremmling BLM office with an education day for the local 8th grade class. Had groups of kids complete stream flow and water quality exercises and participate in some of the simple tests a hydrologist would conduct to determine the overall health of a stream system. Carol and I, along with Betty Ford Alpine Gardens personnel, completed the last of the seed collections for the year at the Leadville site that we have visited so often. In addition to finishing up seed collections we also finished up the rare plant monitoring with a Penstemon species in western Colorado that resides on the shale covered hillsides of the Roan Plateau near a site that use to be mined for oil shale. Along with finishing up already established monitoring programs, we ended the field season with the implementation of a pilot study for a rare species in North Park called Corispermum navicula. The difference in this monitoring was that the species is an annual and therefore presents a unique challenge in how long-term monitoring should be set up. Over the past year figuring out a way to best complete this task has been a side project and a couple weeks ago I was able to implement the protocol. So, as the winter months approach, my mindset must turn to office-based work and less time in the field, but with plenty of data to analyze the winter looks to be busy and full of learning opportunities.
BLM Colorado State Office