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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Bulletin Supplement (Fall 2005)
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STAFF NEWS

 

At the Tombstone WGEW location, SWRC technician Casey Tifft has moved on.  We appreciate his help during the exhaustive summer monsoon season.  In his place, we have hired Holly Harris as a permanent, full-time WGEW technician.  Holly holds a Bachelors Degree from Prescott College in Forest and Fire Ecology and a Teaching Certificate.  She worked as a wildland firefighter/EMT for the Forest Service in Sierra Vista.  Holly is a welcome addition to the Tombstone staff.

 

We have a new Postdoctoral Scientist at SWRC, Dr. Jennifer Moore Kucera.  She defended her Ph.D. in Soil Science last June at Oregon State University.  The title of her dissertation is “microbial community structure as influenced by season and stand age in a Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii) ecosystem.”  Her current work addresses carbon cycling in desert soils and exploration of the microbial world underfoot.  This will shed needed light on how grazing impacts C cycling.  Welcome Jennifer.

 

Frank Shelby Bennett, a native son of Tombstone and long-time landholder in Walnut Gulch Experimental Watershed, passed away on 10 July 2005.  Shelby was a leader at both the community and national level, and a lifelong example of watershed conservation.  Shelby will be missed by many friends and family.

 

SWRC Scientists Mary Nichols, Catlow Shipek and Bill Flack have produced some very professional digital movies of the flows and runoff at WGEW.  These are available on disk upon request.  The work captures flash floods, sediment collection and summary data in one well-annotated and engaging video.

 

As you can see from the rainfall summary in this newsletter, rainfall at the Santa Rita Experimental Range exceeded the 30-year average rainfall in August by nearly 2 inches.  SWRC technicians Jeff Kennedy and Rudy Ortiz deserve recognition for handling a record year of sediment samples at the SRER without losing a single sample.

 

The SWRC Data Access Project (DAP) team has made 50 years of high-quality rainfall and runoff data available on line to scientists and the public.  The DAP coordinator was Eric Anson and the team included Jason Wong, Carl Unkrich, Tim Keefer, Susan Moran, Mary Nichols, Dave Goodrich and Jeff Stone.  Check it out at http://www.tucson.ars.ag.gov/dap/ .

 

FUTURE SCIENCE EVENTS

 

We have acquired a Waterlog “bubbler” water level sensor and plan to have it tested in the laboratory this winter.  We will install it for evaluation at Walnut Gulch Experimental Watershed Flume 6 for the next summer’s North American Monsoon season.

 

The second annual Research Insights in Semiarid Ecosystems (RISE) Symposium was held at the University of Arizona on Saturday, October 8, 2005. The objectives of the symposium were to share recent results of scientific research at WGEW and SRER.  Watch for RISE presentations to be uploaded to the web site at http://www.tucson.ars.ag.gov/rise/ .

 

Another reminder:  The second Interagency Conference on Research in the Watersheds (ICRW) is scheduled for 17-19 May 2006 at USDA SRS Coweeta Hydrologic Laboratory in Otto, North Carolina.  The purpose of this conference is to highlight current research on watershed science and management.  For further information contact Randy Fowler at dlfowler@fs.fed.us or 828-524-2128 X111. 

 

David Goodrich will make an invited presentation entitled “Integrated Science and Decision Making in The Upper San Pedro Basin, AZ” at the 2005 annual meeting of the Geological Society of America in Salt Lake City, Oct. 16-19.

 

Russell Scott will present a poster entitled “Southwestern Ecohydrology Array – SECA: A surface flux monitoring network to better understand energy, water and carbon exchange in semiarid ecosystems" at the 2005 Ameriflux meeting in Boulder, CO Oct. 18-20.

 

Russell Scott will make on invited presentation entitled “Ecohydrological Impacts of Woody Phreatophyte Invasion Within a Semiarid Riparian Environment” at a special session co-chaired by David Goodrich entitled “Groundwater, Phreatophytes, and Biological Invasions in Riparian Areas“ at the 2005 Fall American Geophysical Union Meeting in San Francisco, Dec. 5-9.

 

Several SWRC scientists will participate extensively in the Annual SAHRA (Sustainability of semiarid Hydrology and Riparian Areas) NSF Science and Technology Center Annual Meeting and NSF Site Visit on during Oct. 26-29 in Tucson, Arizona.  Research findings pertaining to riparian hydro-ecological processes and the hydrologic impacts of vegetation change will be presented.  In addition, SWRC scientists will participate in scientist-stakeholder panels to discuss riparian preservation and restoration, water banking, and the basin scale water balance.

 

David Goodrich will participate in the first meeting of the UNESCO Expert Working Group meeting on “Climatic variability and land cover change impacts on flooding and low flows - at what scales?” in Vienna, Austria, Nov. 27-Dec. 2.  The objective of the working group is to identify the key science questions which will lead towards a five year research strategy for testing in HELP (Hydrology for the Environment, Life, and Policy) basins and other research experimental basins (Note: The USDA-ARS Walnut Gulch (AZ) and L. Washita (OK) Experimental Watersheds are part of HELP Basins). 

 

The ARS-EPA-UArizona AGWA (Automated Geospatial Watershed Assessment) Team will be represented by David Goodrich when he makes a presentation entitled “SWReGAP Data to Estimate Change in Watershed Condition for Selected Nevada Watersheds using A GIS-based Hydrologic Modeling Approach” at the National Gap Analysis Conference and Interagency Symposium in Reno, Dec. 6-8.

 

David Goodrich and former SWRC Post-Doc Evan Canfield presented several papers at the American Society of Civil Engineers 2005 Watershed Management Conference in Williamsburg, VA on July 19-22, 2005.  These papers and more than 240 additional papers from experts from around the world can now be obtained on a CD ROM.  For more information and CD purchase information see:   https://www.asce.org/bookstore/book.cfm?book=5362 .

 

AWARDS

 

Chandra Holifield Collins was named the winner of the ARS Administrator's EEO/CR Award for Non-Supervisory employees.  This award was largely based on her efforts to enhance workforce diversity and promoting excellence in science through effective recruitment of minority students and fostering their development through an innovative mentoring program.  The winners will be formally recognized with an award plaque at the ARS Annual Recognition Program to be held February 7, 2006, in Washington, D.C. 

 

 


Last Modified: 1/28/2008
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