First weeks at Surprise Valley!

With this my first post I would like to thank the CLM Program, and its staff, at the Chicago Botanic Garden for this great opportunity of working with the BLM at the Surprise Field Office in Cedarville, CA. My first official work week of the internship started with the workshop at Chicago. At the workshop I had the chance to meet lots of fellow interns and of course the CLM staff (Krissa, Wes, and Matt) who throughout the week exposed to us the objective and purpose of the internship program. The training included vegetation monitoring and analyses techniques, plant ID practice, and navigation with compass and GPS units. Also, the Seeds of Success program was explained, and the protocol for species collection was reviewed to make sure it was followed for a successful collection this year.

Following the workshop week, I arrived at Cedarville in the Surprise Valley. The week started with a staff meeting where I was introduced to the people working in the different departments at the BLM office. The first day continued with driving, computer and first aid certifications and laying out the plan for some of the projects I will be working on.

So far, I have worked with the wildlife department improving sage grouse habitat by recognizing and assessing areas for potential thinning of juniper tree stands to open up the area for more suitable habitat. The removing of trees will also improve hydrology as more water yield from snow melt and rainfall is expected. Other work with the wildlife program has include installing game cameras in new water developments created for recently introduced big horn sheep.  I have also spent time scouting the resource area for seed collection sites, and so far I have made four collections, and am waiting for more native plants to seed out.

I hope to keep enjoying my job here and, of course, keep learning and applying new principles and techniques for conservation and land management.

Until now this is all.

2013 CLM Intern
BLM Surprise Field Office

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