Native Grass Restoration on Umatilla National Forest
Throughout this semester I have been involved with an internship compiling photos and data taken last year for the native grasses restoration project for obliterated road portions in the Umatilla National Forest. The project is being funded by the forest service so that they can provide grass coverage, prevent erosion, and stop noxious weed invasions. The national forest service used perennial native grass seed, such as wildrye, and annual winter wheat to vegetate the roads. My job was to create a photo album of pictures and data taken for the project so that the forest service can monitor the native grass re-vegetation on the obliterated roads over the next four years.
My goals for the internship were to gather all the pictures and data gathered on the restoration project, organize that information on camera point and photo forms for portions of obliterated roads 6231-040, 6209, and 3727, and complete a photo album with all of that information. I will learn to how to effectively use Microsoft Publisher and Adobe Photo Shop to complete these tasks. Lastly, I would like to visit the Umatilla National Forest, specifically the areas that I have entered data and fixed digital pictures for.
This internship has been a good experience for me. I learned about the process of plant restoration. I learned that it is a long process if the re-vegetation worked at all, and that native grasses are the best type of seeds to use. It is also important to know the elevation of the area that is being seeded, because it affects the plant grow. In addition I learned how to effectively use Microsoft Publisher and Adobe Photo Shop; both of which are very helpful skills that I will use throughout the rest of my years at Whitman. However, my work for this internship became a little repetitive. My job was to complete the photo album and didn’t leave much room for any creativity. The internship was interesting and taught me some valuable skills, but I wish it had more variety in the work that I completed.
Betsy Kaiser was wonderful to work with on the project! She was very helpful in getting me started on the photo album, and then letting me take the internship from there. The atmosphere of the office was relaxing and friendly, and I looked forward to going to my internship every week.
This project is valuable to the community, although indirectly. By documenting the native grass restoration process, I am helping the Umatilla National Forest Service determine how effective their process is, and how they can improve it to help preserve the beauty of the national forest.
A problem with this internship is that all the work needs to be completed at the service center. The album needed to be completed on the computers in Betsy’s office there in the building. Since a car is not available to me, it took about 15 to 20 minutes to bike there, and sometimes that two hours spent on my internship as difficult to find the time for. However, it worked well for Betsy and I to set a weekly meeting time - Wednesdays at 2 pm.
In the future, I think environmental studies 120 should keep some type of internship with Betsy Kaiser and the Umatilla National Forest Service. It was an overall great experience.
Key Contacts: Betsy Kaiser
Phone: (509) 522-6056