Monday, May 10, 2010

Day 1

Please don't worry, I won't be running through daily minutiae in the future. This will just give you a feel for how my day will run.

I've been set up with the Aviculture crew. At ICF, there are 9 species of cranes. All the cranes are adults and it is breeding season right now. We are definitely trying to breed cranes! Many are set up in pairs. Some we allow to breed naturally, others we artificially inseminate (AI). There has been a wild whooping crane landing in crane city (the compound where we keep all the adults/breeding birds). He's been causing quite a ruckus. We keep flushing him away, but he hasn't gotten the hint yet.

First thing: morning meeting where the education staff, veterinary staff, and keeping staff all catch up with each other.

Next we clean for two hours. REALLY??? two hours? "that's it?" you say.

Yes. That leaves plenty of time for cleaning projects and individual projects. It also leaves us free to assist the veterinarians. So for the rest of the day, I watched vet procedures and helped to clean the isolation compound (ISO). I've also been assigned a couple of chapters to read in a book about cranes. I'll be able to read these in my down time.

We had a special staff lunch today. I guess this happens every couple of weeks or so. We brought in a gentleman from The Nature Conservancy who talked about everything we'd need to do to plant a diverse species grassland. OMG!! it makes me want to go out and start harvesting native species' seeds today! Though, he said optimally, you should plant about 50 lbs/acre if you are going to see the max benefit from your planted seed. I don't know how long it would take to harvest 50 lbs of wild seed. :/

He also said it's better to have 5 acres of good prairie than 50 acres of no prairie. So true.

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