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Jaxon's Story

My commitment:
Earth Camp ’09 was a very awesome and inspiring experience. During the trip one specific thing I learned that inspired me was that the government has started dropping tamarisk eating beetles on the tamarisk plants in Moab, UT to help eliminate this harmful invasive species. While we were rafting down the river, all of us were able to see the effect these beetles had on the tamarisk plants: all of the plants in the area were dead. This was pretty cool to see because it showed one way that people could make a big difference in fighting invasive species.
With this inspiration,  I have decided that I would like to help with invasive species removal in my neighborhood. Ever since I started doing research on invasive species and learned about different species of invasive plants, I have noticed all kinds bufflegrass ‘colonies’ in my neighborhood and in both Sabino Canyon and Bear Canyon. Some of these colonies have expanded and grown significantly since I first noticed them, and they need to be eliminated before they spread even more.
To begin,  I will map out target areas and get permission from the owners of the lots with bufflegrass on them to remove the bufflegrass for free. If the owners give me the go ahead, I will contact Marilyn Hansen, the head of the non-profit organization, The Sonoran Desert Weedwackers.  She has tools and man-power for removing the grass, and I would like to propose my plans to her.  For the purpose of educating and getting other people my age involved, I would like to start a club at my school for the purpose of helping remove bufflegrass.      

Journal Entry - Day 8: River Put-out, Powell Museum, and Arches
      7-15-09        We come around a bend in Gray Canyon, and we see the butte- the one Lynn said we had to see before we started to sing goodbye songs, and believe me, we all sing a lot. None of us want to see the butte; we all wished that we could wait a couple more days, duckying around before coming around that last bend, but onward we must go: through the last thrilling rapid and onto the last beach we will all spend a meal together on. We already said goodbye to the river guides last night (and sung songs for forever), but now we were parting from these awesome people for real, people that all have qualities that a leader for a shared planet would need. We hugged, shook hands, and yelled goodbyes as we drove away. As we turn around and head back home, we all have taken from this incredible part of this trip inspiration. Inspiration from the awesome ways the geology, and flora, and the fauna of the places we have passed by are connected and inspiration from the cool people we have met and become friends with during this short but sweet trip, and inspiration to lead our generation in conserving resources and educating future generations about conserving recourses. Soon we will be amazed again, though, by the natrual rock architecture of Arches  National Park. I really can't wait! I've been hearing stories of that place for years... And even before that we get to see the J. W. Powell Museum...

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