Research center topic at RotaryMark Sherfy, deputy director of the Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center gave an overview and history of the research center at the March 5 Rotary meeting.
Mark Sherfy, deputy director of the Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center gave an overview and history of the research center at the March 5 Rotary meeting.
The center falls under the U.S. Geological Survey and the Department of Interior and has been in the Jamestown area since 1965. Its purpose is to provide scientific information about biological resources, especially birds and ecosystems that are in and around the area. Examples include how agricultural practices, energy development and the Conservation Reserve Program affect birds that migrate and breed in this region.
The center also has done studies and continues to provide research on Prairie Pothole wetlands, grassland habitats and waterfowl. Current work is also evaluating how wind turbines affect the nesting and flight pattern of grassland birds. Sherfy shared about studies of the pelicans at Chase Lake, which is home to the largest colony of white pelicans in North America. The center also conducts research on Lake Sakakawea and the Missouri River, including responses of birds to the flood of 2011. Data gathered by center researchers is published in scientific articles that are used by state and federal agencies to support their decision making on natural resource management issues. The center has about 40 full-time employees and goes as high as 100 employees during the summer months. Employees come to Jamestown from all over the United States, including some who stay and make this area their permanent home.
President Quincy Backen opened the meeting, Tim Ottmar gave the table prayer, Marv Tokash and Gina Dahl led the group in music and Steve Listopad collected “Happy Dollars” for Rotary projects. Holly Utke was a guest. Student guests were Maria Koebernick and Jayle Diemert, seniors at Jamestown High School.
Bakken reminded members to get their tickets sold for the upcoming Wine Tasting, Brew Ha Ha. March 26 is the job shadow day and the club needs a few more businesses to sign up. On March 19 the Rotary Club will meet at North Dakota Farmers Union for the Ag Week luncheon.
Felicia Sargeant, executive director of the James-town Area Chamber of Commerce, is the speaker at today’s meeting. Nick Schmidt will give the invocation, Gail Martin is the song leader and Ottmar is the sergeant at arms.