08 Sep Botanical Resources Assistant – Mosaics In Science
Located on Georgia’s Fall Line with over 700 acres of land (and an upcoming boundary expansion that will triple park size), Ocmulgee Mounds National Historical Park (OCMU) is home to forested upland, emergent wetlands, and diverse plant and animal life. The Natural Resource intern will contribute to approved resource management objectives in three areas: inventory of plant communities, treatment of 36 target invasive species, and restoration of native plants.
OCMU is in the early stages of developing a GIS program for monitoring and management of invasive plants within the park. The intern will collect plant inventory data in the field using ArcCollector and work with the Natural Resources team to process and analyze it. This data will help inform vital land management decisions.
In past years, close to 70% of infested areas have been cleared of invasive species; these areas require monitoring and maintenance to prevent regrowth. The Natural Resources intern will work with Biological Science Technicians to treat and monitor species such as Chinese privet, Chinese tallow, and other aggressive invaders in these areas. The intern will implement planned management strategies, including manual removal techniques and supervised chemical treatment, keeping detailed records to be used by the Natural Resources team for adaptive management planning and evaluation.
The intern will also participate in the restoration of culturally and ecologically significant Rivercane in areas where invasive species have been removed. This will involve assisting with plant propagation, transplanting, and monitoring the health and success of restoration sites.
The intern will lead a project to compile a resource guide outlining the characteristics and management needs of targeted invasive species using GIS data, historical management records, and supplemental research.
Depending on the participant’s strengths, experience, and interests, there may be opportunities to contribute to research and planning for vegetation management, a wildlife trail camera program, and Natural Resource focused outreach. The intern will also be able to participate in citizen science efforts such as iNaturalist and the Dragonfly Mercury Project.
Specific goals and duties may be tailored to fit the participant’s strengths and interests.