“Look at the trees, look at the birds, look at the clouds, look at the stars… and if you have eyes you will be able to see that the whole existence is joyful. Everything is simply happy.”-Osho
The last month has been one of the most busy and rewarding times of my life. I’ve seen and done so many things and experienced opportunities many will never get to. The other seasonals and I have continued to work on our vegetation studies to determine suitable breeding habitat for the Greater Sage Grouse. We should finish our plots this week and I couldn’t be happier (mostly for the sense of accomplishment, but also because we have done so many that I am beginning to recite the scientific names of all the plants in my sleep.)
Recently, I have also been able to work on several projects in coordination with other agencies. Three weeks ago I went out with the Forest Service to conduct a trout population study in local streams using electroshocking. Not only did I learn the names and characteristics of both native and non-native species, I also learned that trout are way more slippery that the fish I’m used to back in Missouri.. and… I’m not the most graceful in waders. Two weeks ago I traveled to the Virgin River to work with the Department of Natural Resources on a seining project to help eradicate Red Shiners which have managed to work their way back up the river into Utah during this last spring. This was one of the most rewarding experiences and even though I fell into the river on several occasions and returned to my apartment smelling like 12 different sorts of stink, I wouldn’t have traded it for the world.
Like many other interns, I have reached the halfway point in my internship and while it is kind of sad to come to the realization that it will all come to an end soon, I anxiously await all the new experiences the next two months have in store for me. Everything is simply happy… and so am I 🙂