Current WISDOM Projects
Bighorn Sheep Monitoring Project
Between 2019-2020, six interns participated in the Bighorn Sheep Monitoring Project portion of the WISDOM program. Three interns began studying the bighorn sheep in 2019. A second set of three interns continued the bighorn sheep research and additionally began studying the tamarisk beetle in 2020.
Interns monitored bighorn sheep in the Afton Canyon Natural Area of Mojave Trails National Monument to better understand human-sheep interactions. The data collected and reviewed will aid the Bureau of Land Management in its management of public lands. Interns’ role in this project consisted of maintaining field cameras by changing batteries, collecting, and changing the SD cards. Following field work they analyzed the data. Thousands of camera photos needed to be organized to make data usable.
Tamarisk Beetle Quantitative Survey Project
Interns began conducting a quantitative survey of tamarisk beetles in Afton Canyon. Tamarisk beetles and tamarisk weevils are known to be established in the canyon and they are a management concern for BLM. This research aims to aid in management of public lands. Interns’ role in this project consists of conducting sweeps and sets of tamarisk trees to count insects.
The goal of this biocontrol monitoring protocol is to define distribution and abundance of Diorhabda spp., and its range regionally and locally.
Check out the Tamarisk Beetle Blog Post Here!
Dark Night Sky Project
Three interns began monitoring night sky quality in the western portion of Mojave Trails National Monument. The data collected will aid BLM in applying as a Dark Night Sky Sanctuary in the future through the International Dark Sky Association (IDA). Intern roles consist of driving to eight pre-determined spots within the monument, collecting night sky quality measurements, taking GPS points, taking photos, and using an IDA approved device to get official measurements of dark night skies. This data is then brought to the office to be analyzed. Check out the Dark Night Sky Blog Post Here!
Wildlife cameras provide close ups of big horn sheep Elena Palacios
The women tracking bighorn sheep in the Mojave Mary Cook- Rhyne