A Decade Of Discovery - Science Symposium

The Bureau of Land Management and the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science co-hosted A Decade of Discovery science symposium May 24-28th, 2010 in Albuquerque, New Mexico, as part of a year-long celebration of the 10th anniversary of the BLM's National Landscape Conservation System (NLCS). More than 130 presenters highlighted significant research that has occurred on NLCS lands over the past ten years, covering topics as diverse as using the landscape of the Colorado Plateau as an analogue to Mars, discovering dinosaur track sites, restoring native plant communities, and involving citizens in science on the public lands.  Scroll down to read some of the highlights from the symposium. To learn more about science in the National Landscape Conservation System, click here.

To download the abstracts, please click here. To see the Agenda, please click here. To learn more about the field trips that were offered please click here. To read about the key note speakers, click here. To learn about how the symposium promoted sustainability, please click here

Symposium Feature Stories

During each day of the symposium, May 24 - 28, we featured scientific research projects and/or NLCS units that have significant scientific values. See below for the stories featured during A Decade of Discovery.


Monday, May 24, 2010

Prehistoric Trackways National Monument, New Mexico

Just northwest of Las Cruces, New Mexico, movements of animals have been frozen in the sands, silts, and muds of an ancient tidal flat for almost 300 million years. To learn more about the fascinating discoveries on the Prehistoric Trackways National Monument, click here.

 

Prehistoric Trackways National Monument, NM

 

Canyons of the Ancients National Monument, Colorado

Fifty miles west of Durango, Colorado, is found the highest known density of archaeological sites in the United States. To learn more about the exciting findings at Canyons of the Ancients National Monument, click here.

Canyons of the Ancients National Monument, CO


Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Headwaters Forest Reserve, California

Along California’s fog-shrouded north coast, 6 miles southeast of Eureka, California, the majestic Headwaters Forest Reserve is in reality two vastly different forests. Its caretaker, the Bureau of Land Management’s National Landscape Conservation System, is striving to merge them into one. To learn more about how this is being done, click here.

 Headwaters Forest Reserve, CA

Carrizo Plain National Monument, California

The Carrizo Plain National Monument encompasses more than 200,000 acres of vast open grasslands rimmed by mountains –  the last remaining remnant of an ecosystem that used to span the Great Central Valley of California. To learn more about the science of the Carrizo Plain National Monument, click here.

Carrizo Plain National Monument, CA - Photo by Bob Wick, BLM

 


Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah

The dramatic and colorful geologic features within the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument give rise to a diversity of plants and animals that find refuge in the immense ecosystem covering 1.9 million acres in southern Utah. To learn more about the scientific resources of Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, click here.

Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, UT

Morley Nelson Snake River Birds of Prey National Conservation Area, Idaho     

The unique combination of climate, geology, soils and vegetation of the Snake River ecosystem supports extraordinary numbers of prey and the most significant aggregation of nesting raptors in North America and perhaps the world. To learn more about research at the Morley Nelson Snake River Birds of Prey National Conservation Area, click here.

Morley Nelson Snake River Birds of Prey National Conservation Area, ID
Las Cienegas National Conservation Area, Arizona

Ensuring healthy grasslands through adaptive management is a major theme at Las Cienegas National Conservation Area (NCA), only an hour’s drive from the rapidly growing Tucson metropolitan area. To learn more about the adaptive management program, click here.

Las Cienegas National Conservation Area, AZ - Photo by Bob Wick


Thursday, May 27, 2010

Earth to Mars - Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah

Dr. Marjorie Chan, Professor of geology and geophysics, University of Utah, explains that “the public lands of the Colorado Plateau offer all of us a chance to see remarkable features that help us better understand the red planet Mars.” To read more about this research, click here.

 
Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, UT

 

Fort Stanton - Snowy River Cave National Conservation Area, New Mexico

Almost five miles of a continuous, sparkling mineral deposit called “Snowy River,” defines a major discovery within the Fort Stanton - Snowy River Cave National Conservation Area (NCA) managed by the Bureau of Land Management in New Mexico. To learn more about this discovery, click here.

Fort Stanton-Snowy River Cave National Conservation Area, NM


Friday, May 28, 2010

Agua Fria National Monument, Arizona

The 70,900-acre Agua Fria National Monument is one of the most significant natural and cultural landscapes in the American Southwest. It contains more than 400 recorded archaeological sites spanning some 2,000 years of human history. To learn more about Agua Fria National Monument's rich record of human history and biological diversity, click here.

Agua Fria National Monument, Arizona

 

Upper Missouri River Breaks National Monument, Montana

The 375,000 acres of the Upper Missouri River Breaks National Monument in central Montana remain largely unspoiled from the time that Lewis and Clark traveled through on their epic journey more than 200 years ago. Yet land use practices surrounding this region have changed dramatically since then. To learn about the scientists who are studying the effects those practices may have had on streamside (riparian) areas both within and outside of the Monument click here.  

Upper Missouri River Breaks National Monument, MT


A Decade of Discovery Graphic  Featured in the graphic design for the Science Symposium, A Decade of Discovery, is a reconstruction of the new, as yet unnamed horned dinosaur informally known as "Chimeraceratops." One of over twenty new species of dinosaur found in Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument over the last ten years, this creature, perhaps as much as anything, has come to symbolize how important the scientific resources managed by the National Landscape Conservation System are to the global research community. The finding of this giant rhinoceros-like herbivore in 2007 caused paleontologists to begin questioning basic biogeographic and evolutionary models and led to the proposal of a new, higher diversity, higher endemism-based model for North America as the 170 million year reign of the dinosaurs approached its end. The official naming of this animal, appropriately, will occur in 2010.