As the Lead Biological Technician at Lincoln National Forest, I was tasked with inventorying Zapus Hudsonius – New Mexico Meadow Jumping Mouse. This is a candidate species under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).
The challenge was that there was very little known about the critter. Extremely trap shy and there was no formal protocol put into place for this inventory project. There was a time limit because of a lawsuit produced by Wetland Degradation for a private land owner who wanted water from the Wetlands owned by the Forest Service.
Implemented a protocol for trapping the population. This protocol involved trap spacing, size of traps, and bait to be used for the trapping.
Led and trained a team of four biological science technicians within the wetlands to set out approximately 200 traps. Trained in capture techniques and species identification.
Caught two of the species, and referred the information to the US Fish and Wildlife Service for help with the decision to list the Jumping Mouse on the endangered species list. Developed a data sheet, analyzed data and wrote reports on the findings. Presented information about the project to community groups.
Within 2 months, captured two species, prepared the report for possibility of endangered species and determined suitable habitat for the species for future conservation.