The temperature has been slowly creeping up the thermometer making the field days uncomfortable. Luckily for me my project is just a lot of reading and calculations that I can do inside away from the heat. As it so happens my desk at home is in front of the AC making for a very enjoyable work area. It is has been very interesting reading about the cultural importance of huckleberries to the Native American tribes. For the most part huckleberry harvest was a time for seeing friends and family as they travel to their harvest locations. They would pick during the day and celebrate during the evening. It sounds like a wonderful time.
We joked about us all getting a bumble bee tattoo at the beginning of the internship. As I already had plans for a sleeve and the bee just so happened to fit into my design I took a break to visit a friend. My friend opened a tattoo parlor here in Polson over a year ago and is doing some nice work. it was nice catching up and getting started on my sleeve.
Once again I am writing and writing, it’s a slow process somedays. Today I retrieved the 2018 Huckleberry phenology data and uploaded it into the 2015 to 2018 Huckleberry Phenology. I was able to finish up on the graphs and data sheets for my report. Some of the introduction still needs to filled in. Not much changed still working on everything slowly but surly.
My sister and her family made it to Polson for the Cherry Festival Saturday. She doesn’t live that far away but our schedules are too opposite it makes it hard to get together. Then we toured the local Miracle of America museum during live history where we took a ride in a half track and played in a decommissioned helicopter. I really enjoyed spending time with my nephew. Later in the day a friend and I went to a wedding reception of a close friend.
Poster time, I must admit that I am a bit intimidated about poster making. I have only made two posters in my student career and although the second poster is considerably better than my first poster I still fear that my third poster will looking like a child created it.
This week was dedicated to lab work, mainly analyzing the historical drought data for the northwest Montana that contains the recorded historical huckleberry patches. Some of the data didn’t download properly, I am not sure if it was something I was doing or what so I ended up taking hours correcting the data. But it all worked out by the end of the day.
Luckily, I was able to take a break to cook dinner on the grill and had a relaxing bonfire. Later today I am going to take a break and go watch the Toy Story Movie.
This week has been another rainy one so there has not been much to do out in the field. We did make it out to the Boulder sites on Monday for focal surveys but the bees must have sensed the upcoming storm and were not out. Rebekah and I heard what sounded like a human screaming. It was a bit unnerving as there was no vehicles in the vicinity. Not sure if there is a wild animal that can make sounds like that. There was several snowshoe hares out today. This one thought it had the drop on me but snapped this shot before he got away.
The rest of the week was taken up by reading research papers and typing my introduction. I have found scientific writing to be a bit slow, creative writing is more my forte. Thanks to some direction from Tony my report has started to come along. The writing is still slow but at least it now has more direction,
Friday Jessica, Carol, and I spent the day at the Arlee Powwow to volunteer our time for SKC’s stream table. It was a very hot day with lots of people everywhere but it was so much fun watching the kids play in the plastic sand and water. My favorite was watching the kids that just wanted to play and the ones that learned how to change stream currents. All in all I met some really nice people, eat some good food, and had a great time.
This is a clear-cut area up Bolder with a beautiful view of huckleberries and if it weren’t for the rain there would have been more Bumble bees out. Monday I have experienced the only draw back of this internship, no bug spray allowed. It was a little difficult to concentrate being a walking mosquito buffet but I was able to catch a bee and one very convincing mimic fly. By the end of the day we photographed and cataloged a number of bees, I said hello to a snowshoe rabbit, was bitten 41 times by mosquitos, and still tick free.
It raining most of the week so we were stuck inside working on our projects. I must admit that I became a bit obsessed with collecting data and crunching numbers to really put much time in writing my deliverables for the week. One of my goals this next week is to manage my time better. It is hard to function throughout the day when you stay up to the early morning working on your project. This next week I will be finish gathering the historical data of the huckleberry phenology of the Mission valley and schedule more time for my report.
Unfortunately, there was no fun stuff this week for me. Goose is 12 years old and was having a bad week. We spent some extra time cuddling and hanging out. She was spoiled with a nice chicken and rice home cooked dinner to go along with her new medication. It is sad that they are only here for a short amount of time but she will live like a Queen as long as she is here.
The REU on Sustainable Land and Water Resources five teams met at the Glacier Institute Campground located in beautiful Glacier National Park. The educational classes were very interesting and the hands on plant identification was important for the huckleberry internship I am a part of this summer. The teambuilding games, bonfire, and outings were fun and allowed us to get to know each other. I enjoyed meeting so many people who are passionate about science. Continuing on into this summer I am looking forward to gaining the hands on experience of the scientific process.
The Friday after camping in Glacier I headed out to the hills for collecting bees and preformed surveys. I had a wonderful time climbing around the Huckleberries and Bear Grass. I only fell twice which is considerably less than I had expected. At the first survey cite there was few Bubble bees and even fewer at the second survey cite. Unfortunately I didn’t find Bubble bees to catch. Luckily Rustin is very skilled at seeing and collecting them, he even caught one from out of the air. I am enjoying a really nice relaxing weekend and am looking forward to more adventures next week.