Contributed Photo: The agave group takes a second to capture the moment for posterity.
By Paul Anger
SAFFORD – EAC’s Discovery Park Campus, Gila Watershed Partnership, Freeport McMoRan, and a group of EAC biology students hosted an activity for Mrs. Hilary Waters’ 5th grade class from Dorothy Stinson Elementary School about the interdependence of bats and agave plants, inspiring the students to replant nearly 50 agaves throughout the Discovery Park Campus.
The students learned about the importance of bats and agaves and how they depend upon one another for survival. This lesson was given by Ann George, Freeport McMoRan’s biodiversity projects coordinator; and Steve Plath, Gila Watershed Partnership’s greenhouse manager.
Because of the importance of maintaining a healthy population of agave plants, Gila Watershed Partnership volunteers had previously relocated some agave plants from Freeport McMoRan property to EAC’s Discovery Park Campus, a protected natural area where bat populations thrive.
With assistance from other volunteers, Waters’ class dug deep holes in the rocky soil and replanted the agaves. The students’ efforts will ensure a food source for the bats and provide pollinators for the agaves, keeping our native environment healthy and vibrant.
For more information on the bats and agaves at the EAC Discovery Park Campus, visit the campus or call (928) 428-6260.