West Fargo takes second at state Envirothon
West Fargo High School won second place at the North Dakota state Envirothon which was May 9-11 at Crystal Springs Bible Camp north of Jamestown. The team also had the best wildlife and oral presentation scores. The competition hosted 22 teams from across North Dakota.
The team called "Treeus Birchus" consisted of Parker Stone, team captain Joslin Forness, Manuela Vidales, Miro Herrera-Grant, alternate Alex Harwood, Chesney Braun and Katie Kavorak.
This year's theme was the management of rangelands. The students studied hands-on natural resource management topics focused on water quality, soils, forestry and wildlife. They worked together in their teams going down trails running tests, reading maps, identifying organisms and conservation techniques, sampling soils and water and other work.
After a day of trail testing, the students were given an oral management problem, and in 2.25 hours, they were tasked with creating a presentation for a panel of judges on how to solve the problem. This year, they were given stats for the property of a rancher who ran cattle on both his own private and some public (leased) grazing land. He had a weed problem and didn't think his cattle were gaining enough weight. He also wanted to put native prairie habitat back for wildlife so hunting improved.
Students worked up a 10-minute presentation to solve the problem and presented to a panel of natural resource professionals and a local rancher, and the judges scored them with a rubric.