While my internship has come to an end, I want to thank everyone who has made MANO Project possible, which allowed me to take a step into a field that I am passionate about. It takes effort and consistency to make these opportunities available to everyone who strives to dedicate their time to conserve resources for wildlife and nature enthusiasts. These past months I immersed myself in tasks and site visits with USFWS peers and partners who make conservation possible. I hope all the work I worked on is beneficial for any project SFWO peers work on in the future. I enjoyed the Sec 7 training, conservation tasks, and enrichment of connecting with multiple people throughout my internship. During projects, I noticed that everyone was consistent with their obligations and duties when consulting applicants. It takes patience and numerous team meetings to effectively consult project applicants, which made me fully understand that to enjoy Section 7 consultation, you have to be tremendously passionate to find what’s best for the species' survival. I’m proud of what the Sacramento Fish and Wildlife Office does to not only constantly make an environment inclusive for everyone but the ambition to hold discussions to make people aware of diversity, equity, and inclusion issues. I hope they continue these efforts by branching out to other regional offices and partners to spread these ideas and discussions amongst peers. Communicating and discussing these issues of what unrepresented communities face is one step towards setting a tone.
I appreciate the NWR Wildlife Biologists for letting me partake in surveys at Delevan, Antioch, and Kern. I’m excited to apply these new skills at other refuges. The species that we surveyed are all listed as endangered, which made me grateful that I helped to continue efforts to protect them. The Blue Lange’s metalmark butterfly, Blunt-nosed leopard lizard, and kangaroo rat are the three main species I surveyed, and I hope I can contribute more towards protecting them in the future. Although my Military and Waterway Planning internship is over, I’ve become fond of the dedication and special moments I shared with them. I’ll remanence those moments while I continue the next chapters in my career.