Spring is coming early in 3/4 of national parks, according to a new study. Awesome? Not so much. As flowers bloom earlier every year, it’s disrupting the link between the wildflowers and the arrival of birds, bees, and butterflies that feed on and pollinate the flowers. In Shenandoah, an earlier spring is giving invasive plants a head start, and they’re displacing native wildflowers, leading to costly management issues.
Before the 1960s almost everything about living openly as a lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT) person was illegal. New York City laws against homosexual activities were particularly harsh. The Stonewall Uprising on June 28, 1969 is a milestone in the quest for LGBT civil rights and provided momentum for a movement.
Vine Creek Ranch at Death Valley National Park. Steady drought and record summer heat make Death Valley a land of extremes. Towering peaks are frosted with winter snow. Rare rainstorms bring vast fields of wildflowers. Lush oases harbor tiny fish and refuge for wildlife and humans. Despite its morbid name, a great diversity of life survives in Death Valley.
Located 2,600 miles southwest of Hawaii, the National Park of American Samoa is the most remote unit of the National Park System and the U.S. National Park south of the Equator. The Park spreads across three islands, 9,500 acres of tropical rainforest, and 4,000 acres of ocean, including coral reefs. While remote, the islands of American Samoa, true to the meaning of the word Samoa (Islands of Sacred Earth), are welcoming and offer beautiful landscapes and centuries of culture and history.
As Research Coordinator for the Northwest Climate Science Center, Dr. Nicole DeCrappeo is responsible for marrying the science needs of regional stakeholders (e.g., federal, state, and local agencies, Landscape Conservation Cooperatives, and Native American tribes) with university and federal climate science expertise. Prior to this position, she was a research ecologist with the USGS Forest and Rangeland Ecosystem Science Center, where she studied the links between native and exotic invasive plants, soil biological communities, and nutrient cycling in aridlands of the western United States. She has worked on topics ranging from biodiversity and ecosystem function in tallgrass prairies to climate change effects on nematodes in the Dry Valleys of Antarctica.
Nicole has a Ph.D. in Soil Science from Oregon State University, an M.S. in Ecology from Colorado State University, and a B.A. in Environmental Studies from American University.