Work with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

 Work with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

From 1995 - 1999 and 2002 - 2004 I worked for the Ecological Services Branch of the United States Fish and Wildlife Service in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

During my first stint with the Fish and Wildlife Service, I worked in the Environmental Contaminants Branch under Mark Wilson and Joel Lusk.  There, I was fortunate to produce a number of published environmental contaminants reports, such as a comprehensive review of contaminant data from the San Juan River from 1990-1996, a contaminant review of Dexter and Mescalero Fish hatcheries, a follow-up review of the Fish Hatchery report, and a number of other "grey literature" reports.

During my second term with the Fish and Wildlife Service, I worked under the special Silvery Minnow Recovery program.  There, our primary duty was to conduct "salvage operations," wherein we removed Rio Grande silvery minnows from drying pools (the drying was a result of land and water management practices) and transported them to flowing water further north.  We also conducted habitat studies, coordinated egg collection efforts, and monitored the river on a daily basis.

While at the working for the Silvery Minnow program, I, along with a number of other agency and non-agency employees, witnessed multiple breaches of the operating Biological Opinion on the Rio Grande.  Upon leaving the Fish and Wildlife Service, I contacted Forest Guardians, a non-profit environmental organization, who provided a press release detailing these multiple breaches.  Articles regarding this appeared in the following dailies:

The Albuquerque Journal (requires a subscription)

The Santa Fe New Mexican

KVIA El Paso

The Los Alamos Monitor

The Westerner Blog

The Silvery Minnow program continues to be a contentious project.  Efforts to recover the fish are still ongoing, as are salvage efforts, which will likely continue into perpetuity so long as water and the fish are continually mismanaged.