I have been preparing to lead a one day workshop on the recovery of the endangered Ohlone tiger beetle. The purpose of the workshop is for all of the managers, land owners, and regulators, such as from the City Parks, State Parks, Fish and Wildlife, to come together to discuss the status, research, management, and future of the Ohlone tiger beetle. That means that I will be presenting ALL of my research to the people that can actually apply the results to protect the Ohlone tiger beetle. In other words, this workshop is more important than my written dissertation or my exit seminar (coming soon!) in regards to the future existence of the beetle.
To prepare for the workshop, I have not only created presentations in a way that relates all of my science directly to management actions, but also present realistic actions that can be done by all of the organizations involved. I have been fortunate to work closely with many of the managers, including Santa Cruz City Parks and UC Santa Cruz, to test these management actions and prove their practicality and benefit to the beetle. I also understand what actions they are logistically capable of carrying out. In order to sum it all up, I was able to create a 1 page management guide that hopefully will be a go-to guide for Ohlone tiger beetle conservation. I have found that while human actions caused their endangerment, our actions are the key to their persistence.
I must admit, I am becoming pretty emotional during these last months of my research, leaving behind (Location TBD :)) the fate of the Ohlone tiger beetle into the hands of others. I have worked hard to determine how we can manage the beetle’s habitat and populations and believe I have some solid management recommendations that will do just that. Fortunately, the Ohlone tiger beetle lives in an area with intelligent, caring, and conscientious managers and land owners. Also fortunately, it is federally protected so as long as the Endangered Species Act is in place, the Ohlone tiger beetle will have a chance….and I’ll be back to check on them.