The Endangered Species Recovery Program at California State University, Stanislaus has received $16,000 to help fund its research on species living in Ripon’s Caswell Memorial State Park.
The money comes from the Sacramento Zoo’s Quarters for Conservation program, which allows zoo visitors to vote for one of three projects.
Each of the three projects selected receives $5,000 as a startup grant, with additional funds coming based on votes received. CSU Stanislaus’s ESRP will receive an additional $11,000 by way of votes received.
A check will be presented as part of the Sacramento Zoo’s Earth Fest, which takes place on Saturday.
Patrick Kelly, CSU Stanislaus zoology professor and coordinator of ESRP, said the money received will go to helping pay student researchers.
“This funding is going to provide real, hands-on research experience in field biology for our majors, especially those who are interested in careers in ecology or conservation biology,” Kelly said. “We deeply appreciate the support from and partnership with the Sacramento Zoological Society and the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine on this and related projects.”
Much of CSU Stanislaus’s ESRP research has focused on the riparian brush rabbit, but work has also been conducted on the San Joaquin kit fox, Mohave ground squirrel, and other endangered species.
The funding received from the Sacramento Zoo will go towards research of riparian brush rabbit and riparian woodrats of the Caswell Memorial State Park in Ripon.
“Assisting ESRP with field research has been one of the most rewarding experiences in my education,” said Elizabeth Parks, a Stockton native and a senior biology major. “While all of my classes emphasize the importance of conserving wildlife – particularly native species like riparian brush rabbits and riparian woodrats – there is no substitute for braving the thorny brush to make a real difference in the field.”