Issue: Summer 2015

We hope this finds you enjoying the last days of the summer season. Here in Tucson, we are wrapping up the first year of our partnership with Mayfly Watch, continuing work with National Wildlife Refuges across the country, and beginning collaborations in new locations such as the Grand Bay National Wildlife Refuge and National Estuarine Research Reserve

We are excited to announce the new hire of an Americorps volunteer who will lead the coordination of the Rio Grande Phenology Trail in the Albuquerque area. This Trail involves monitoring of the Bosque ecosystem at sites along the Middle Rio Grande. We hope that this will become a model that the USFWS can use to compare the response of animals and plants to a changing climate both on and off the NWRS. Read more about this effort, as well as the many new resources available to you below.  




USFWS Liaison
Education Coordinator
Phenology on the Refuges
Photo: Alan Stankevitz
Mayfly Watch helps validate emergence models
The Upper Mississippi River NWFR and the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Office paired up with the USA-NPN's Nature's Notebook program this year to document mayfly emergence along the Upper Mississippi. More citizen scientists participated this year than ever before, contributing mayfly emergence reports that helped to validate the predicted emergence models created by the USFWS. 
These data are used to better predict the timing of mayfly emergence to inform city management, as well as provide information about water quality and the amount of food available for fish and other mayfly predators. The project has encouraged new collaborations as well, including with a mayfly reintroduction program in Green Bay. We look forward to continuing to analyze data as they come in, and to expanding the project next year. 

New Resources for our Refuge Partners
View FWS data with the Visualization Tool
The new USA-NPN Phenology Visualization Tool, released earlier this summer, allows you to explore spatial and temporal phenology data collected both on and off the NWRS. Visualize data with phenology calendars to show phenophase activity over the year for up to 14 species, and scatter plots to visualize relationships such as first occurrence vs. climatic variables

Other resources for downloading and visualizing FWS data
This 2-page guide demonstrates the options for downloading data for your FWS group in Nature's Notebook. The guide gives options for visualizing data such as customized phenology calendars on your Observation Deck that let you view your group's data and the new Visualization Tool, described above. Download calendars and other graphics to share with your group members.

What's New at USA-NPN
Americorps volunteer hired to lead Rio Grande Phenology Trail coordination
The Rio Grande Phenology Trail connects organizations such as the Valle de Oro NWR and botanic gardens in the common goal of monitoring phenology of a suite of focal species in the Bosque ecosystem.  

For the next year, Trail Coordinator Jessica Allen will lead a group of volunteers in using Nature's Notebook to monitor phenology at multiple locations along the Rio Grande. Her primary duties will be to work with local coordinators on various phenology monitoring efforts, conduct monitoring at newly established sites on and off the NWRS, and recruit and train volunteers for these sites who will take over at the end of her position. This is the second Americorps position funded through the USFWS to help establish a long-term phenology monitoring program for management and education. The first was in Canaan Valley NWR this past year. We hope this will serve as a viable model for the NWRS for phenology monitoring. 

Upcoming Events
Valle de Oro NWR turns 3!
Valle de Oro NWR, the Southwest's first urban wildlife refuge, will be celebrating its 3rd birthday in an public event at the Refuge on Saturday, September 26th. USA-NPN's USFWS Liaison Erin Posthumus and Rio Grande Phenology Trail Coordinator Jessica Allen will be in attendance, hosting a booth to showcase results of the phenology monitoring that has been conducted at our pilot Refuge over the last 2 years.

Partner Showcase Webinar
There is still time to join this webinar and learn how other groups are using Nature's NotebookGet insight, tools and tricks from other groups who are conducting long-term phenology programs to meet science, outreach, and education goals.

September 8, 2015, 2pm EDT, 1pm CDT, 12pm MDT, 11am PDT & AZ. All webinars are recorded and posted online.

Year-end summary Webinar
What happened in 2015? Join us to learn what your 2015 observations reveal, and the ways scientists are using your observations. We will cover results from the 2015 Campaigns, as well as a range of other results from observers across the country.
October 6, 2015, 2pm EDT, 1pm CDT, 12pm MDT, 11am PDT & AZ. All webinars are recorded and posted online.

Stay Connected
Erin Posthumus
US Fish & Wildlife Service Liaison and Outreach Coordinator
 LoriAnne head shot
LoriAnne Barnett
Education Coordinator
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