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Annual Boulder County Nature Association Ecosymposium

Annual Boulder County Nature Association Ecosymposium
2019 Theme: The Changing Baseline for Front Range Ecosystems: Implications for Management and Restoration

March 16, 9 a.m. - 3 p.m.   SEEC Building on CU campus, 4001 Discovery Drive in Boulder. 

Change is a constant in ecological systems, but in the Anthropocene age, human impacts are dramatically influencing the nature and pace of ecological change—literally and metaphorically changing the landscape around us. Development, drainage, fire suppression, agriculture, resource extraction, introduction of invasive species, and anthropogenic climate change are just some of these influences. In the face of such long-term, irreversible changes, the very concept of a ‘baseline’ or ‘reference state’ of an ecosystem may be unsuitable as a basis for management decisions.  This symposium will explore what we know from recent research and monitoring studies about change over decades to Front Range plant, animal and microbial communities. We will consider the implications for managing these communities for resilience: not with the goal of returning them to some idealized and static past, but by bolstering their ability to adapt to the challenges of the future. 

Speakers will describe research observations of change in local ecosystems from the mountains to the plains, highlight local observations, and raise questions for nature observers and land managers.  When change is such a constant, how do we think about managing for resilience?  What might it mean to “restore forward” in Boulder County? 

More information: 

Parking: Parking is available near the SEEC building for $9/day and in nearby lots 544 and 548 at no charge.