Friday, May 27, 2011

Guzzler Project at Ruby Marshes with NDOW May 21, 2011

Great view looking west towards the Ruby Mountains

Last week on May 21, I volunteered with the Nevada Department of Wildlife (NDOW) to help build a guzzler at the Ruby Marshes; approximately 75 miles south of Wells. Guzzlers are man- made containers which trap rain water or snow melt. They are used in dry areas of the west to benifit wildlife during dry periods of the year. Because of guzzlers, places like Nevada and New Mexico can support more wildlife. The NDOW currently manages approximately 1,500 guzzlers in Nevada of which 300 have big collection devices.This particular guzzler will trap rain to fill tanks with water to benefit pronghorn antelope in the valley.

I drove from West Wendover with Steve Dennin, who teaches 4th grade. We arrived at the site at 9:20am and volunteered until 5:00pm. Our job mainly involved shoveling, carrying supplies and other support duties. NDOW supplied lunch and dinner as well. The best part of the project was networking with Nevada biologists throughout the day.

Another look at the snow capped peaks across the valley

The small container which animals will drink out of

The posts for the barb wired fence to keep wild horses out.
Needless to say, these biologists do not like horses. The pipe which carries water from the storage tanks to the guzzler is right underneath me. In theory the guzzler will remain full without human help.

The collection device at the end of the rain catcher. From here water enters huge storage tanks below. Gravity will carry water down a small pipe to the actual guzzler container.

The huge rain catching device