WREN is partnering with local scientists such as Cary Kerst and community volunteers for a new Citizen Science program. As the name implies, Citizen Science will gather scientific information around the west Eugene area to give us a better understanding of our area. Our first project in this program is the Vernal Pools Project. This winter we have begun a qualitative study of three vernal pool sites in west Eugene (that means we are checking things out to see what's there). We are looking for folks that have some field science background or a strong commitment to learn sampling protocol to join us in this endeavor both Spring and Fall.
Vernal refers to "spring" in Latin. Wetlands sometimes have pools that fill seasonally, that are not connected to any other open waterways, called vernal pools. These seasonal bodies of water create a very unique niche habitat due to acidity and salinity gradients. (that means that vernal pools can be a harsh place to live because the chemistry of the dirt can really change! AND there aren't very many places like this so a special place = special things living there)
Here is a shot of Liz, Cary and I at the Tsanchiifin site.
Do you see the macroinvertebrates? (find the little water bugs we are looking for - don't look too close!) There is a caddisfly larva on the right hand side next to its case.