By Nathaniel Park- Biodiversity
Entering the new quarter, the biodiversity team continues with its predetermined mission as new and exciting developments take place. With new equipment, revised goals, and positive outlook we ready ourselves for the action portion of the action research project.
Since the end of last quarter, we have concluded our bird surveys of the major areas on campus. With the full bird data we now have a clear view of what kind of birds are attracted to different areas on campus, which is incredibly important information as we begin to look at possible developments of new wild-type areas. The data is very surprising as there are far more species of birds making residence at UCLA than we could have imagined when we started this project.
We have also concluded our plant identifications of each area as well, which will provide us with an important variable as we examine the relationships between bird and plant diversity. With the two sources of data, we hope to find a strong correlation once we find the biodiversity index for each area. Hopefully we are able to finish it soon with the help of our stakeholder, Ryan.
For the stage in our data collection, we have purchased—thanks to the generosity of TGIF as well as the Institute of the Environment—several malaise traps (as seen above). These traps will provide us with insect information on campus in terms of species and the locations in which they reside. We set up them up with the permissions of the school architect last weekend and they are already catching a fair amount of bugs.
In terms of our action plan for the completion of the quarter, we will begin to research and visit places that have had success with gardens or areas made up of native or Mediterranean plants so we can have a good starting reference point for our plans.