WESPEN Online Order Form print this page
US Fish & Wildlife Service FieldNotes
ASH MEADOWS NWR: Sierra Club Working Weekend at Ash Meadows NWR
Region 8, March 8, 2009
Sierra Club members from Nevada spent a day cutting cattails back the warm spring pools at Point of Rocks in the Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge, home of at least 25 endemic species, including the Ash Meadows Amargosa pupfish. (photo: USFWS)
Sierra Club members from Nevada spent a day cutting cattails back the warm spring pools at Point of Rocks in the Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge, home of at least 25 endemic species, including the Ash Meadows Amargosa pupfish. (photo: USFWS) - Photo Credit: n/a

by Christina Nalen, Ash Meadows NWR
Twenty-one members of the Las Vegas Sierra Club spent three days at Ash Meadows NWR volunteering their time to spruce up refuge lands and Devils Hole on Death Valley National Park. After arriving and setting up camp by the Refuge bunkhouse Friday, March 6,  the volunteers spent half a day working with fish biologists for Devils Hole, repairing a trail and  cleaning up the area around the Hole.

Saturday morning, March 7, Visitor Services Manager Christina Nalen met the volunteers in the Refuge visitor contact station for a welcome and safety talk about the work being done that day.  Most volunteers started the day cutting cattails back in the 85+ degree Point of Rocks spring pools, which had not been "tamed" in two years.  A smaller group of the volunteers cleared a seep of any growth impeding the flow in preparation of a native snail salvage project to take place later in the month.  After clearing the Point of Rocks pools, and finding a cold-water spring pool, the volunteers moved over to the Kings Pool and its outflow to tackle more cattails in noticably warmer 90 degree waters.  In all, a dump truck load worth of cattails was cut and piled for removal from the site later. Seven hours of volunteer time was logged for the Refuge and four hours for the Park.

The evening provided an opportunity for the Sierra Club volunteers to ask Park representatives and Wildlife Refuge Manager Sharon McKelvey, Wildlife Biologist Cristi Baldino, and Law Enforcement Officer Shane Nalen questions about refuge management and the issues facing land managers today.

Contact Info: Christina Nalen, 775-372-5435, christina_nalen@fws.gov