Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Geared up for more field work

In the field yesterday we collected what seemed like thousands of soil cores and brought them back to our "lab" (which conveniently converts back into the kitchen at meal times). We spent several hours prepping the collected samples for analysis. This included sieving them, de-rooting them, weighing them, and in some cases watering them. For now, they are stored in a refrigerator until we are ready to work with them again.

Today, we are planning on heading back to the field site to do a perimeter scan. We will walk along the tree-line leading further into the park from the basin as well as the river-bank which denotes the park boundary. A highly accurate GPS (within 3 meters!) will allow us to mark any areas of invasive species that we find. This scan will give us a general idea of the scope of the impact that allysum has made (and consequently the size of our problem).

In other news, we've yet to see a grizzly, but remain hopeful. The warmer weather and sunny days are good signs that they are out. For our next early-morning expedition we have developed a bear playlist to lure them into sight, including favorites such as "bear necessities" and "maneater". Surely the right tunes will bring us success.

I don't want to say that we are desperate yet, but if you happen to know any tips for the best sightings....we wouldn't be opposed to hearing them!


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