How do you value nature? A recent UW Bothell class took to North Creek Forest in an effort to address this question. They took measurements at recent restoration sites, in areas dominated by invasive weeds, and in mature areas with minimal invasive plants. At each site they collected data on air and soil temperature and measured tree size and carbon uptake. One team also collected water quality data and compared it with EPA standards. As part of the class assignment the students presented their findings in infographics, easily understandable graphics designed to share with the community. Students also attended our first Forest Research Expo where they explained their methods and findings to community members attending our fall planting work party.
Work party participants and other members of the public appreciated seeing how the forest can be used as a lab for students to learn valuable skills, learning the impact that mature trees can have on carbon in our atmosphere, and how the forest maintains water quality for endangered salmon living downstream.
We thank UW Bothell Professor Maura Shelton and her students for their work!
A good sign for salmon - the water tested by students this fall lies within range of what is considered healthy!