Following is a selected project highlight from the Share with Wildlife mission to assist all New Mexico wildlife in need, no matter what species.
Engaging Students in Studying Wildlife Along New Mexico Rivers
How many different animals can you find on the river near where you live? What is the quality of the habitat that these animals use? What can you find out about the biology and relationships to their environment of particular species found in riparian areas (i.e., habitat next to rivers) in New Mexico?
River Source is using Share with Wildlife funds to work with students at three schools in northern New Mexico to answer these questions and more. River Source gives students an opportunity to explore and survey riparian areas and wetlands firsthand through a series of field trips. Students are learning to look for, identify, and record information on wildlife; collect data on a number of measures of riparian habitat and water quality; and some will participate in a competition for the best paper on a Species of Greatest Conservation Need found in New Mexico.
River Source has started off their project by meeting with students at Santa Fe Indian School. These students are traveling to multiple sites along the Santa Fe River to record data. During one of their field trips in March, they recorded sign and sightings of roughly 10 different animal species (not bad for the middle of the day at a site near the Santa Fe airport!) and evaluated the phosphorous levels in the water (high!). They also took photos and GPS points at multiple locations along the river. They will take more photos at the same locations later on to evaluate changes in the environment, especially the vegetation.