News Article | June 20, 2016
Ticked Off! Here's What You Need To Know About Lyme Disease A woman in New Mexico was attacked by a wild bear while participating in a marathon at a national preserve over the weekend, state wildlife officials said. The New Mexico Game and Fish Department reported that the female runner was making her way through the Valles Caldera National Preserve near Los Alamos Saturday, June 18, when she came across a female black bear and her cub. Agency officials said the woman may have startled the animals, causing the bear cub to run up to a nearby tree while its mother proceeded to attack the runner to protect her young. The woman sustained several injuries, including scratches and bites to her head, neck and upper body, though none of them were considered to be life-threatening to the victim. Other runners saw the injured woman and helped her until paramedics arrived at the scene. The victim was then airlifted to a hospital in Albuquerque to receive further medical treatment. Because of the recent bear attack, the National Park Service (NPS) and the state's Game and Fish Department warned the public against traveling to the area of the national preserve. Wildlife officials launched a search for the bear in order to have it euthanized and tested for possible rabies infection. While bears are not known to carry rabies, the New Mexico Game and Fish Department said it can be highly lethal to humans if left untreated properly. Last month, a man in Alaska was mauled by a bear while on a hike with his family. Kenny Steck was filling bottles with water for his family when the massive animal came charging at him. Steck raised one of his legs to protect himself from the attack, but the rabid bear clawed it. When he tried to yell for help, his attacker proceeded to crush his shoulder and placed his head on its mouth. Just when he thought he was about to be devoured by the bear, it suddenly stopped and let go of him. The animal then ran off into the wild. Fortunately, Steck's wife and other family members who were with him on the trip were trained nurses, and they helped treat his wounds immediately. He suffered several injuries to his head, shoulder and leg. Steck's wife, Hannah, said it was a miracle that the wild bear avoided attacking his skull. This was the third time a bear attack occurred in Alaska so far this year. © 2016 Tech Times, All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.
News Article | February 15, 2017
The U.S. National Park Service has proposed protecting thermal features within New Mexico’s Valles Caldera National Preserve from possible adverse effects of geothermal power development near the preserve.
de Graauw K.K.,West Virginia University |
Towner R.H.,University of Arizona |
Grissino-Mayer H.D.,University of Tennessee at Knoxville |
Kessler N.V.,University of Arizona |
And 4 more authors.
Dendrochronologia | Year: 2014
We used dendroarchaeological techniques to determine the year of construction of two historic structures in the Valles Caldera National Preserve of New Mexico, USA Historical documents date some structures in the headquarters area of the Preserve, but the Commissary Cabin and Salt Barn were lacking conclusive construction dates Both structures were originally thought to have been built by the Otero family who bought the property in 1899 We found that the structures were built from two tree species, white fir (Abies concolor (Gordon) Lindl ex Hildebr.) and Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii (Mirb.) Franco), surprising given that ponderosa pines are also found in great numbers in the adjacent forest Tree rings from 20 logs were confidently crossdated both graphically and statistically and provided cutting dates of trees in both structures of 1940 and 1941 when compared against the Fenton Lake reference chronology (Commissary Cabin: r= 0.69, t= 15.54, p< 0.0001, n= 263 years; Salt Barn: r= 0.77, t= 11.7, p< 0.0001, n= 232 years) By combining the cutting date years and terminal ring attributes, we suggest that both structures were built in the spring or early summer of 1941 using freshly cut logs and logs that had been cut the previous spring (1940, before or during the growing season) and stockpiled The cutting dates of 1940 and 1941 indicate that these buildings were constructed during the Franklin Bond (1939-1945) era and associated with the transition from sheep ranching to more modern cattle grazing These new dates provide a more distinct understanding of the cultural resources at the Valles Caldera National Preserve and provide interpretative staff with more accurate information that can be given to the public © 2014 Elsevier GmbH.
Abramson G.,University of New Mexico |
Abramson G.,Bariloche Atomic Center |
Giuggioli L.,University of New Mexico |
Giuggioli L.,University of Bristol |
And 2 more authors.
Journal of Theoretical Biology | Year: 2013
Wave propagation can be clearly discerned in data collected on mouse populations in the Cibola National Forest (New Mexico, USA) related to seasonal changes. During an exploration of the construction of a methodology for investigations of the spread of the Hantavirus epidemic in mice we have built a system of interacting reaction diffusion equations of the Fisher-Kolmogorov-Petrovskii-Piskunov type. Although that approach has met with clear success recently in explaining Hantavirus refugia and other spatiotemporal correlations, we have discovered that certain observed features of the wave propagation observed in the data we mention are impossible to explain unless modifications are made. However, we have found that it is possible to provide a tentative explanation/description of the observations on the basis of an assumed Allee effect proposed to exist in the dynamics. Such incorporation of the Allee effect has been found useful in several of our recent investigations both of population dynamics and pattern formation and appears to be natural to the observed system. We report on our investigation of the observations with our extended theory. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.
Reale J.K.,University of New Mexico |
Reale J.K.,U.S. Army |
Van Horn D.J.,University of New Mexico |
Condon K.E.,Valles Caldera National Preserve |
Dahm C.N.,University of New Mexico
Freshwater Science | Year: 2015
To further our understanding of the linkages among wildfire, streamflow pathways, and water chemistry, we used a network of water-quality sensors and streamflow gages to assess initial and long-term effects of wildfire along a river continuum. We assessed water quality of a 2nd- and a 4th-order stream in a single watershed for 5 monsoon seasons before, during, and after a catastrophic wildfire. Fire had significant and sustained long-term effects on both streams. In the 2nd-order stream, variability in dissolved O2 (DO) increased after the fire. Daily total precipitation was unchanged, but episodic storm events resulted in significant increases in stream discharge that led to elevated turbidity and specific conductance (SC). In the 4th-order stream, fire led to minimal measurable effects on turbidity, elevated SC, and greater variability of the DO signal. We also assessed water-quality data from 4 sites along the river continuum for a 4-mo period before, during, and after the wildfire. Large overland and debris-flow events in the 1st- and 2nd-order streams resulted in elevated particles (e.g., soil, sediment, rock, ash, plant biomass) and solutes in transport that elevated turbidity and SC and damped the DO signal. We documented less severe postfire effects in the 3rd-order stream probably because of groundwater contributions and a higher stream gradient with a pool-riffle geomorphology. We observed nominal changes in turbidity, strong SC spikes, and strong DO decreases in the 4th-order stream. Streamflow pathways, geomorphology, physiochemical properties, and biogeochemical processes play a central role in the postfire waterquality response along the river continuum. Our findings highlight the importance of collecting water-quality measurements at temporal and spatial scales that effectively capture hydrological dynamics. © 2015 by The Society for Freshwater Science.
Parmenter R.R.,Valles Caldera National Preserve |
Parmenter R.R.,University of New Mexico |
Kreutzian M.,U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service |
Moore D.I.,University of New Mexico |
Lightfoot D.C.,University of New Mexico
Environmental Entomology | Year: 2011
Surface-active arthropods were sampled after a lightning-caused wildfire in desert grassland habitat on the Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge, Socorro County, NM. Pitfall traps (n = 32 per treatment) were used to evaluate species-specific "activity-density" indices after the June wildfire in both burned and unburned areas. In total, 5,302 individuals were collected from 69 taxa. Herbivore activity-densities generally decreased, whereas predators often increased in the burned area; pitfall trap bias likely contributed to this latter observation. Fire caused the virtual extirpation of scaly crickets (Mogoplistidae), field crickets (Gryllidae), and camel crickets (Raphidophoridae), but recolonization began during the first postfire growing season. Several grasshoppers (Acrididae) also exhibited significant postfire declines [Ageneotettix deorum (Scudder), Eritettix simplex (Scudder), Melanoplus bowditchi Scudder, and Amphitornus coloradus (Thomas)]. Some beetles showed lower activity-density, including Pasimachus obsoletus LeConte (Carabidae) and Eleodes extricatus (Say) (Tenebrionidae). Taxa exhibiting significant postfire increases in activity-density included acridid grasshoppers (Aulocara femoratum (Scudder), Hesperotettix viridis (Thomas), Trimerotropis pallidipennis (Burmeis.), and Xanthippus corallipes Haldeman); carabid beetles (Amblycheila picolominii Reiche, Cicindela punctulata Olivier), tenebrionid beetles (Eleodes longicollis LeConte, Edrotes rotundus (Say), Glyptasida sordida (LeConte), Stenomorpha censors (Casey); the centipedes Taiyubius harrietae Chamberlin (Lithobiidae) and Scolopendra polymorpha Wood (Scolopendridae); scorpions (Vaejovis spp.; Vaejovidae); and sun spiders (Eremobates spp.; Eremobatidae). Native sand roaches (Arenivaga erratica Rehn, Eremoblata subdiaphana (Scudder); Polyphagidae) displayed no significant fire response. Overall, arthropod responses to fire in this desert grassland (with comparatively low and patchy fuel loads) were comparable to those in mesic grasslands with much higher and more continuous fuel loads. © 2011 Entomological Society of America.
Gerber B.D.,Colorado State University |
Parmenter R.R.,Valles Caldera National Preserve
Ecological Applications | Year: 2015
Abundance and density of wild animals are important ecological metrics. However, estimating either is fraught with challenges; spatial capture-recapture (SCR) models are a relatively new class of models that attempt to ameliorate common challenges, providing a statistically coherent framework to estimate abundance and density. SCR models are increasingly being used in ecological and conservation studies of mammals worldwide, but have received little testing with empirical field data. We use data collected via a web and grid sampling design to evaluate the basic SCR model where small-mammal abundance ( N ) and density ( D) are known (via exhaustive sampling). We fit the basic SCR model with and without a behavioral effect to 11 small-mammal populations for each sampling design using a Bayesian and likelihood SCR modeling approach. We compare SCR and ad hoc density estimators using frequentist performance measures. We found Bayesian and likelihood SCR estimates of density (D) and abundance (N) to be similar. We also found SCR models to have moderately poor frequentist coverage of D and N (45-73%), high deviation from truth (i.e., accuracy; D, 17-29%; N, 16-29%), and consistent negative bias across inferential paradigms, sampling designs, and models. With the trapping grid data, the basic SCR model generally performed more poorly than the best ad hoc estimator (behavior CR super-population estimate divided by the full mean maximum distance moved estimate of the effective trapping area), whereas with the trapping web data, the best-performing SCR model (null) was comparable to the best distance model. Relatively poor frequentist SCR coverage resulted from higher precision (SCR coefficients of variation [CVs] , ad hoc CVs); however and D were fairly well correlated (r 2 range of 0.77-0.96). SCR's negative relative bias (i.e., average underestimation of the true density) suggests additional heterogeneity in detection and/or that small mammals maintained asymmetric home ranges. We suggest caution in the use of the basic SCR model when trapping animals in a sampling grid and more generally when small sample sizes necessitate the spatial scale parameter (σ) apply to all individuals. When possible, researchers should consider variation in detection and incorporate individual biological and/or ecological variation at the trap level when modeling σ. ©2015 by the Ecological Society of America.
Van Horn D.J.,University of New Mexico |
White C.S.,University of New Mexico |
Martinez E.A.,New Mexico Highlands University |
Hernandez C.,New Mexico Highlands University |
And 4 more authors.
Rangeland Ecology and Management | Year: 2012
Catchment characteristics and disturbances control the conditions and processes found in stream ecosystems. We examined nutrient cycling linkages between riparian soils and adjacent streams and the impacts of the removal of ungulate grazing on these ecosystems and processes at six grazing exclosure sites in the Valles Caldera National Preserve, NM, USA. The exclusion of native and domestic ungulate grazers for 3 yr significantly increased the riparian aboveground biomass of standing vegetation (273±155 in grazed vs. 400± 178 g .m -2 in exclosures) and litter (58±75 in grazed vs. 110± 76 g .m -2 in exclosures) (P0.003 and 0.006, respectively). Except for an increase in total soil phosphorous (P) at three of the six sites, soil nutrient values were minimally affected by grazing after five growing seasons. Within the six sites studied, no connection was found between 015-cm depth soils, which were P-limited based on stoichiometric ratios, and stream nutrient availability or limitation, which were nitrogen limited. Stream geomorphology was not significantly altered by 5 yr of grazing exclusion. The elimination of grazing suppressed instream nutrient processing with significantly longer NH4 uptake lengths (P0.003). These results suggest the exclusion of ungulate grazing impacts terrestrial characteristics (increased standing vegetative biomass) that are linked to ecosystem services provided by adjacent aquatic ecosystems (reduced N-uptake). Management plans should carefully balance the positive effect of grazing on stream nutrient processing and retention reported here with the well-documented grazing-related loss of other ecosystem services such as decreased fish and aquatic invertebrate habitat and effects on water-quality parameters such as turbidity and water temperature.
Gifford S.J.,Utah State University |
Gese E.M.,Utah State University |
Parmenter R.R.,Valles Caldera National Preserve
Journal of Ethology | Year: 2016
Coyote (Canis latrans) spatial and social ecology are variable, but have been little studied in high-elevation environments. In these temperate ecosystems, large ungulates are prevalent and coyote pack size may be large in order for them to scavenge and defend ungulate carcasses from conspecifics in neighboring packs. We initiated a study to understand the spatial and social ecology of coyotes on the Valles Caldera National Preserve, a high-elevation (2450–3400 m) protected area in northern New Mexico. Our objectives were to (1) describe the home range size and habitat use of coyotes in the preserve, (2) describe coyote movements within and outside of packs, and (3) to evaluate the relationship between coyote social cohesion and the amount of elk (Cervus elaphus) in the coyote diet. We acquired global positioning system and telemetry locations from 33 coyotes from August 2005 to July 2009. We classified 23 coyotes (70 % of individuals) as residents (i.e., territorial) during at least part of the study and ten coyotes (30 %) as transients. Overall mean home range size of resident packs was 10.6 ± 2.2 (SD) km2. Home range size varied between packs, but did not vary by season or year. Coyotes used dry and wet meadow habitats as expected based on availability; coyotes used riparian habitat more than expected, and forests less than expected. Social cohesion did not vary among biological seasons. Alpha coyotes were more socially cohesive with each other than with other pack members, and a transient exhibited temporal–spatial avoidance of pack members while inside the pack’s territory followed by integration into the pack. Contrary to expectations, we found no relationship between coyote social cohesion and the proportion of elk in coyote diets. We concluded that coyote space use and sociality on the preserve were relatively stable year-round despite changes in biological needs, snow depth, and utilization of variously sized prey. © 2016 Japan Ethological Society and Springer Japan (outside the USA)
PubMed | Valles Caldera National Preserve
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Environmental entomology | Year: 2012
Surface-active arthropods were sampled after a lightning-caused wildfire in desert grassland habitat on the Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge, Socorro County, NM. Pitfall traps (n = 32 per treatment) were used to evaluate species-specific activity-density indices after the June wildfire in both burned and unburned areas. In total, 5,302 individuals were collected from 69 taxa. Herbivore activity-densities generally decreased, whereas predators often increased in the burned area; pitfall trap bias likely contributed to this latter observation. Fire caused the virtual extirpation of scaly crickets (Mogoplistidae), field crickets (Gryllidae), and camel crickets (Raphidophoridae), but recolonization began during the first postfire growing season. Several grasshoppers (Acrididae) also exhibited significant postfire declines [Ageneotettix deorum (Scudder), Eritettix simplex (Scudder), Melanoplus bowditchi Scudder, and Amphitornus coloradus (Thomas)]. Some beetles showed lower activity-density, including Pasimachus obsoletus LeConte (Carabidae) and Eleodes extricatus (Say) (Tenebrionidae). Taxa exhibiting significant postfire increases in activity-density included acridid grasshoppers (Aulocara femoratum (Scudder), Hesperotettix viridis (Thomas), Trimerotropis pallidipennis (Burmeis.), and Xanthippus corallipes Haldeman); carabid beetles (Amblycheila picolominii Reiche, Cicindela punctulata Olivier), tenebrionid beetles (Eleodes longicollis LeConte, Edrotes rotundus (Say), Glyptasida sordida (LeConte), Stenomorpha consors (Casey); the centipedes Taiyubius harrietae Chamberlin (Lithobiidae) and Scolopendra polymorpha Wood (Scolopendridae); scorpions (Vaejovis spp.; Vaejovidae); and sun spiders (Eremobates spp.; Eremobatidae). Native sand roaches (Arenivaga erratica Rehn, Eremoblata subdiaphana (Scudder); Polyphagidae) displayed no significant fire response. Overall, arthropod responses to fire in this desert grassland (with comparatively low and patchy fuel loads) were comparable to those in mesic grasslands with much higher and more continuous fuel loads.