History of BEMP

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BEMP receives the “2012 US Forest Service Chief’s Award for Engaging Urban America”

In response to the Bosque Biological Management Plan, BEMP was founded in 1996 to monitor the state of the bosque ecosystem. Monitoring and data collection began three sites (Alameda, Rio Grande Nature Center & Los Lunas) in 1997 and we’re now in our 25th consecutive year of data collection!


Dan Shaw with a student in the bosque

The late Dr. Cliff Crawford (UNM Department of Biology), his then-graduate student Lisa Ellis, and Dan Shaw (Bosque School Science Faculty) brought community members together to collect local ecological information – i.e. community science in the Albuquerque community – to both enhance scientific research capabilities and to educate local citizens about their bosque. BEMP currently has 33 active sites, across 270 miles of the Middle Rio Grande, and over 1 million data points are collected each year. Data is primarily collected by K-12 students and their teachers, demonstrating how local science initiatives like this can successfully connect people to their landscapes while helping inform resource management policies.