Fall’s Finest

September and October have been lively here at the preserve. As we continue to flood up more ponds each week, more birds continue to arrive. With birds arriving, so too do the visitors. In general, there has been an uptick in how busy and lively things feel.
Mainly, my time has been split three ways. I have been continuing to learn/help with the wetland program. I have also been working on some more botanically-focused priorities. My third overall task has been putting my time into day-to-day operations of the preserve—things like installing signage, doing equipment maintenance, and other odd jobs.
With some minor setbacks being squared away, the wetlands program is in full swing as we shoot for 100% flood-up. I will be finished before that time, but it has still been incredible to see the changes as ponds are flooded up each week.
Botanically, my time has been spent helping with a vegetation monitoring crew, producing a map of potential upland restoration areas, and collecting some seeds. Given that the preserve has many partners, I was able to go out with a vegetation monitoring crew that works for The Nature Conservancy. Though I only spent two days with them, I learned a lot of new species and about the surveying protocol that they implement here at the preserve. This experience was quite rewarding and helped me to hone my botanical skills a little more.
Producing the map was quite an experience. With no experience in ArcMap prior to this project, I had quite a learning curve. Nonetheless, I was able to draw on my experience with the open source QGIS system to complete my task–creating a map of potential and current upland restoration sites on BLM-owned and managed land. While frustrating at times, I am glad to have had the opportunity to learn a little bit about ArcMap and how to troubleshoot within the program.
My third botanical task was to collect some more seeds for an operational collection. I was able to collect seeds from Euthamia occidentalis (Western flat-topped goldenrod) and Grindelia camporum (Great Valley gumplant)–both species of the Asteraceae. These seeds will be put into storage and hopefully, serve as a source of seed in future restoration projects here at CRP.
I find it hard to believe that I am done in two weeks time, but my work here has kept me very engaged. I continue to do all that I can to learn and help out on a daily basis and am looking to finish out these last couple of weeks in a good way.
Until next time,
Tyler Rose
Cosumnes River Preserve

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