November is Manatee Awareness Month; but no matter what time of year it is, manatees deserve to be celebrated. These amazing creatures fulfill a unique niche by serving as indicator species for ecosystems across the United States. Because of their reliance on the health of their habitat, manatees often act as a signal of their environment’s well-being. NOAA photo by Michael Buchanan.
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.
Established by the American Indian Trust Fund Management Reform Act of 1994(Public Law 103-412), OST was created to improve the accountability and management of Indian funds held in trust by the federal government. As trustee, DOI has the primary fiduciary responsibility to manage both tribal trust funds and Individual Indian Money (IIM) accounts.
The purpose of OST is to provide oversight, reform and coordination of the policies, procedures, systems and practices used by various agencies to manage Indian trust assets. This effort is integrally related to DOI's goal of meeting its responsibilities to American Indians.
The goals of OST include:
to protect and preserve Indian trust assets and collect and accurately account for income due beneficiaries;
to obtain agreement with all tribal and individual Indian account holders on the balances in their trust accounts in a manner that is fair to both the Indian community and the general public, does not impair or impede reform efforts, and does not result in reductions in Indian programs; and
to provide timely and responsive customer services to account holders.