On Oct. 21-22, the Middle Rio Grande Endangered Species Collaborative Program (MRGESCP) celebrated its 10th anniversary by hosting a two-day event for the public at the Rio Grande Nature Center in Albuquerque, N.M.
MRGESCP is a partnership involving 16 current signatories, including the Corps, organized to protect and improve the status of endangered species along the Middle Rio Grande, while simultaneously protecting existing and future regional water uses. Two species of particular concern are the Rio Grande silvery minnow and the southwestern willow flycatcher.
The first day’s program was reserved for technical presentations by various collaborative members and experts. The sessions included Rio Grande silvery minnow genetics, evolution of habitat restoration and ground water and surface water interaction. The second day of the program focused on families. More than 250 parents and children participated in a number of activities including origami, calligraphy, face painting, guided nature walks and decorating fish prints.
Children delighted in viewing live silvery minnows and trout in fish tanks provided by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the abundant fall foliage provided a colorful background for the fun and educational activities.