Thought we would share some of the exciting things that we have been doing as volunteers for Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge.
In September of 2011, a 570 acre former dairy, located five miles south of downtown Albuquerque, was approved to be established as the Southwest’s first urban wildlife refuge. Valle de Oro sits along the Rio Grande and there are plans for the land to be returned to its original riparian state.
A part of establishing a new refuge is boundary marking. It must be fenced and signed. A while back we headed north to help our sister refuge with this task.
Every week or two something goes awry and we head back up to the entrance to see what we can do about it.
The brains of the operation! The original fix was fairly simple. A packrat had taken up residence in the box and been enjoying the wires as daily snacks. We ‘freed’ the rat to take up residence somewhere else, repaired the wires, re-set the limiters and have since created a wire barrier to prevent future rodent occupations. Random electrical surges and other miscellaneous issues however have continued to throw the computer into various phases of shock. So, for now, when we get the word of doom we run up front and re-set everything to get it back to good.
Remember that Wetlands fence we’ve been slowly updating you on? Well, we made a bit more progress.
When the weather isn’t so great we’ve worked inside the visitor center doing what we can to help out with electrical issues. So far we’ve replaced switches and ballasts, got their emergency lighting back in order and sorted out the details and goings on of all of the breakers in their three electrical boxes.
And... for the final share of the evening. A few weeks back we had the most exciting privilege to assist with the capture of two Mexican Gray Wolves at our reintroduction facility.
One of the wolves had just returned from another location and was having blood drawn for tests and being generally checked over to ensure all was well. The other had just been received from a zoo in Mexico and was to be vaccinated and have blood drawn. We then moved her to a pen closer to a male whom she will hopefully mate with.
She just ran and ran and ran, all the while keeping a close eye on us. We were moving in a line, walking slowly forward (holding big objects to imply a larger than life presence) trying to encourage her into her den box.