30 Years of Nitrogen Fertilization in Spruce-Fir Forest

High-elevation species still struggling

spruce-768x1024Rocks and sediments bind up almost 98 percent of all nitrogen. The remaining 2 percent is in motion, part of a global chemical cycle that includes humans, bacteria, plants, and the atmosphere.

“Plants need nitrogen to grow,” says U.S. Forest Service research ecologist Steve McNulty. “However, excess nitrogen can harm plants.”

Nitrogen and sulfur can combine with oxygen to form nitrogen or sulfur oxides. These compounds become part of the atmosphere, where they react with water vapor and other elements. Eventually, the nitrogen and sulfur – now in the form of nitric and sulfuric acid – fall to the ground with the rain drops.

Read more: 30 Years of Nitrogen Fertilization in Spruce-Fir Forest

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Public invited to release of California Condors

California Condor
California Condor

Public invited to release of California Condors on Saturday, Sept. 30, at Vermilion Cliffs National Monument  

VERMILION CLIFFS, Ariz. – California Condors will be released to the wild in Vermilion Cliffs National Monument in northern Arizona at 11 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 30. The public is welcome to observe the release from a viewing area where spotting scopes will be set up and project personnel will be available to answer questions.  

The release coincides with National Public Lands Day, the nation’s largest hands-on volunteer effort to improve and enhance America’s public lands. National Public Lands Day involves the U.S. Bureau of Land Management and other federal agencies, along with state and local governments and private groups.  

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Volunteer for National Public Lands Day

Volunteers cleaning up

National Public Lands Day is the nation’s largest, single-day volunteer event for public lands. Held every year on the last Saturday of September, National Public Lands Day brings together hundreds of thousands of individual, student and organizational volunteers to help maintain and restore America’s treasured places.

National Public Lands Day, volunteer

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Endangered California condors roosting in western Sierras for first time in nearly 40 years

BLUE RIDGE NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE, Calif. – For the first time in nearly forty years endangered California condors are roosting at Blue Ridge National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) in Tulare County, California.

“Blue Ridge was created specifically for California condors, and to see them roosting there once again is a historic moment for us. As we grow the California condor population, their distribution continues to expand into their former range, which includes the Sierra foothills,” said Joseph Brandt, supervisory wildlife biologist with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s (Service) Hopper Mountain National Wildlife Refuge Complex (NWRC) in Ventura, California.

USFWS, wildlife refuge, condos, Blue Ridge

Read more: Endangered California condors roosting in western Sierras for first time in nearly 40 years

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Lesser Prairie-Chicken Range-wide Plan is working on the Landscape

Lesser Prairie ChickenThe Western Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies (WAFWA) has released a new video demonstrating how the mitigation program in the Lesser Prairie-Chicken Range-wide Conservation Plan is successfully conserving habitat for this iconic grassland bird. The video documents work being done on a West Texas ranch that is being funded by industry participation in the plan. The video was produced through a partnership between WAFWA, the Natural Resources Conservation Service and Pheasants Forever.

The range-wide plan allows industry to continue operations while reducing and mitigating impacts to the bird and its grassland habitat. Industry contributions support conservation actions implemented by participating private landowners. Pioneer Natural Resources is one of more than 160 companies that are enrolled in the plan.

Lesser Prairie Chicken, conservation plan

Read more: Lesser Prairie-Chicken Range-wide Plan is working on the Landscape

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