Last week on Monday, April 30th I wrapped up my data collecting for my independent study that's been running for the past 12 weeks at the Muller Field Station. To refresh, this study was funded by a National Science Foundation Grant, the Community College Undergraduate Research Initiative. I was able to purchase 5 Cuddeback camera traps, various scent lures, and other sundry supplies like batteries, gloves, and scent pads. I've been checking the cameras weekly on every Monday since February 6th, 2012. The following are the pictures collected between 4/23 and 4/30.
Camera C - please note that the time stamps are wrong on these pictures. I'm not sure what happened, but I realize they are incorrect!
Red fox...there must be a den nearby!
A male WTD with nubs!
And that's all she wrote! Officially through with collecting data. DONE! It was a wild 12 weeks, so much fun checking the cameras every week waiting to see what I got. I'm honestly surprised that I didn't get: beaver, striped skunk, black bear, or more river otter, mink, and muskrat.
This morning I got a call from Nadia, the K12 Outreach Coordinator at the field station. I've left the cameras up for her to continue to use with school groups that come and visit. She calls me in a frenzy this morning to tell me that we finally got this:
BAM. 3 days after I was "done" collecting data! AND this was on Camera B, the one I neglected to set correctly for the final week! I'm kicking myself. I can't believe this darn bear waited perhaps all 12 weeks before showing his/her face. I have been seeing bear sign for WEEKS at the field station, within eyesight of one of my camera sets! So frustrating, but VERY cool that it finally happened!
Now it's data time. I've been looking over and over at the data I collected which I've stuck into a spreadsheet in Excel. I'm also writing my final paper and drawing conclusions and "stuff". It's tedious, frustrating, but I'm very excited to see the final results.