By Bernadette Kuhn
In the last few weeks, CNHP botanists and volunteers have been busy sampling transects of Eriogonum pelinophilum (Clay-loving wild-buckwheat). The field work is part of a joint monitoring project with the Colorado Natural Areas Program and Denver Botanic Gardens. The Clay-loving buckwheat is endemic to Mancos Shale badlands in Western Colorado, and is federally listed as Endangered. Our 2011 field work is a continuation of monitoring efforts that began in the 1990’s.
The monitoring project is positioned in the heart of one of the largest known populations of the buckwheat. This population occurs on both the BLM-owned Fairview ACEC, and the state-owned Wacker Ranch Natural Area. The goal of this study is to understand trends in population size over time and comparing populations on BLM land and State land.