Skip directly to content


PEEC: 'We Are Stars' 7 p.m. Today

on July 5, 2016 - 5:58am
PEEC News:
An exciting, family-friendly film, "We are Stars," plays at 7 p.m., today and at 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, June 9 and 10 in the Los Alamos Nature Center planetarium. 
Pajarito Environmental Education Center’s (PEEC’s) planetarium film, "We are Stars," connects life on Earth to the evolution of the Universe by investigating the chemistry of stars.
Tickets may be purchased by phone or at the Los Alamos Nature Center and are only $6 for adults and $4 for children. This movie is not recommended for children under 4 years old.

Bird Walk In Lower Rendija Canyon July 10

on July 4, 2016 - 8:10am

Lesser goldfinch. Photo by Dave Yeamans

PEEC News: 

One of the best ways to begin bird watching is by looking for the birds seen and heard every day.

To help beginning birders recognize some of the species living in Los Alamos, long-time Los Alamos resident and bird watcher Joe Fitzgibbon is leading a three-mile hike at 7 a.m. Sunday, July 10.

Adults and children who can hike quietly are welcome to attend. This is the perfect opportunity to spot, identify and admire local species of birds. Potential sightings may include white-throated swifts, red-tailed hawks and sapsuckers.

Interior Department Announces Final Regulations To Ensure American Public Receives Every Dollar Due For Production Of Oil, Gas & Coal

on July 3, 2016 - 9:05am
WASHINGTON, D.C.  As part of the overall effort to modernize the Nation’s energy regulations, the U.S. Department of the Interior released final regulations that will improve valuation and revenue collection for the country’s mineral resources, ensuring Americans receive every dollar due for production of those resources on public lands and waters.
Developed by Interior’s Office of Natural Resources Revenue (ONRR), the rule also provides the clarity and certainty for industry in determining the market value, for royalty purposes, of Federal oil and gas, and

Trail Expert Craig Martin Leads Bandelier Hike July 16

on July 2, 2016 - 7:51am

Approaching Upper Crossing. Courtesy photo

PEEC News:

Craig Martin will lead a hike to Upper Crossing Saturday, July 16. The four-mile hike includes 400 feet of elevation gain, incredible views of Frijoles Canyon, a walk through an old growth Ponderosa Pine Forest, beautiful wildflowers, and a chance to glimpse some unusual plants near the end of the trail.

This hike, organized by the Pajarito Environmental Education Center (PEEC), is one of many events to help people get outside and enjoy nature.

To hike Bandelier’s Upper Crossing with Martin, register online at and

Foxx & Korkos Teach Quilting With Nature July 24

on July 2, 2016 - 7:11am
A quilt block inspired by a thistle. Courtesy photo

PEEC News:

Los Alamos artists Terry Foxx and Katy Korkos are leading a quilting workshop at the Los Alamos Nature Center 1-4 p.m. Sunday, July 24. Foxx and Korkos will reveal tricks of the trade for using fabric to depict the beauty of wildflowers. Advance registration is requested.

This workshop will cover the basics of understanding and observing nature as well as elements of fabric, creating a foundation for making a wildflower portrait.

Bear Concerns Prompt LANL To Close Trails

on July 1, 2016 - 10:14pm

A significant increase in bear sightings closes LANL trails. Courtesy image

LANL News:

Just before noon today, Los Alamos National Laboratory warned employees to watch out for bears and keep off the outdoor trails inside the lab perimeter until notified otherwise. The following memo to all employees from the Communications Office was obtained by the Los Alamos Daily Post:

All Laboratory trails are closed

Due to a significant increase in bear sightings and encounters, the Laboratory has closed all trails on Laboratory property until further notice. Employees are urged to stay off all

Los Alamos Nature Center Closed Monday July 4

on July 1, 2016 - 10:25am
Los Alamos Nature Center. Photo by Patrick Coulie
PEEC News:
The Los Alamos Nature Center will be closed Monday, July 4, which is a great time to use Los Alamos Trails App to find a fun hike.
Take a Passport to the Pajarito Plateau along, find the rubbing plates and get even closer to the next prize. There are different prizes for hiking two, five, eight, and 12 trails in the passport booklet. It is fun for the whole family.
The Los Alamos Nature Center will resume regular hours 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Tuesday. For more information about the Los Alamos Nature Center, operated by the

SFNF Holding Public Meetings On Geothermal Energy Development Draft EA

on July 1, 2016 - 10:15am

SFNF News:

SANTA FE – The Santa Fe National Forest today announced that the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) on the potential effects of geothermal energy development on land within Forest boundaries is available on the Forest website here.

The Forest will hold three public meetings to provide a brief overview of the proposed project and the analysis of effects. The first meeting is 6-7:30 p.m., Thursday, July 7, 2016, at the Forest Headquarters, 11 Forest Lane in Santa Fe. Additional meetings will be scheduled in Abiquiu and Jemez Springs.

Letter To The Editor: LA Mountain Cleanup Project Impact Factor

on July 1, 2016 - 7:02am
Los Alamos

Dear Jennifer and Forest Service,

As the youth member who developed the idea of holding the project to Clean Up the decades of paint-related litter on LA Mountain, I'd like to thank you all dearly for allowing my club, Rotary Interact, and me the permission to clean up the notorious LA Mountain in Los Alamos.
Through the diligent work from 10 of our youth members, we were able to scale the mountain this last Saturday on the hottest day of the year (not intentional...) and collect 90 articles of trash, which we took to the dump later that day!

WIPP To Hold Public Meetings On Permit Modification Request

on June 30, 2016 - 9:41am
WIPP News:
The U.S. Department of Energy Carlsbad Field Office and Nuclear Waste Partnership LLC (Permittees) will conduct two public meetings Tuesday, June 28, and Thursday, June 30, 2016. 
3-5 p.m.
Tuesday, June 28
Courtyard by Marriott
3347 Cerrillos Road
Santa Fe, New Mexico
5-7 p.m.
Thursday, June 30
Skeen-Whitlock Building
4021 National Parks Highway
Carlsbad, New Mexico
The purpose of the meetings is to provide information to the public on a proposed request to modify the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) Hazardous Waste Facility Permit.

Townsite Cleanup Continues In Los Alamos Canyon

on June 30, 2016 - 9:38am

EM-LA Manager Doug Hintze

DOE News:

The Department of Energy’s (DOE) Environmental Management Los Alamos Field Office (EM-LA) and Los Alamos National Security, LLC (LANS) is moving forward with the removal of contaminated soil along the south-facing slopes of Los Alamos Canyon adjacent to the Los Alamos Townsite.

The contaminated soil is primarily associated with legacy outfalls from the Manhattan Project and early Cold War research activities from 1943–1965.

“Cleaning up historical properties from areas within and around the Los Alamos Townsite is among our top priorities.

DOE Awards Cooperative Agreement To NMEMNRD

on June 30, 2016 - 8:07am

DOE News:

CARLSBAD — The Department of Energy’s Carlsbad Field Office today awarded a $6.8 million, five-year cooperative agreement to the New Mexico Energy, Minerals and Natural Resources Department (NMEMNRD) for the coordination of activities with participating state agencies that ensure the safe transportation of transuranic waste to the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP).

Activities under the cooperative agreement focus on required preparations for transuranic waste shipments and continued assurance of safe and uneventful transportation of radioactive waste through the West, as agreed

Planetarium Feature Film: Exoplanets July 2

on June 30, 2016 - 7:25am


PEEC News:

The Feature Film: Exoplanets, is showing at 2 p.m. Saturday, July 2 in the planetarium at the Los Alamos Nature Center, 2600 Canyon Road.

This film opens by describing how scientists and astronomers find exoplanets and then takes the audience past the solar system to see which exoplanets may harbor life. This is an exciting time when it is no longer a question of if there is life on other planets, but a question of where and when life on other planets, exoplanets, is found. Watch the Exoplanets Trailer.

This full-dome film was developed by Casper Planetarium.

NMED Issues 2nd Emergency Order To Morningstar Water Supply System

on June 30, 2016 - 7:20am
NMED News:
SANTA FE  A top priority for the New Mexico Environment Department is water system oversight, as all New Mexicans deserve access to clean, safe drinking water. In a priority action June 24, the Environment Department issues another Emergency Order to the Morningstar Water Supply System.
This Order will ensure that the water system’s pace of operations in this situation improves. With the Environment Department’s issuance of the Order, $1,000 per day penalties are imposed for each directive in the Order that is not accomplished timely. 
These directives order

How The Hen House Turns: Is Cat Psychology Easily Categorized?

on June 30, 2016 - 6:34am
By Carolyn A. (Cary) Neeper, Ph. D
Longtime Los Alamos Resident
Now residing in California

First the good news: no difference in personality could be found in a study of indoor and outdoor cats. At least, not in Australia. More studies are scheduled to be done on American cats by the Cat Teacher Program run by North Carolina's State University and Museum of  Natural Science.

An article in the News Observer May 17, 2016 reported that 2,800 Australian and New Zealand cats have "...five broad feline personality dimensions," three of which "...correspond to those in humans." The cats were

YMCA Hosts Wilderness Teen Leadership Program

on June 29, 2016 - 8:38am
Participants in the YMCA's outdoor leadership program. Courtesy photo

Courtesy photo

YMCA News:

All northern New Mexico youth are welcome to join an outdoor leadership program that features overnight backpacking trips.

The Family YMCA’s Boys/Girls Outdoor Leadership Development (BOLD/GOLD), a wilderness-based teen leadership program is hosting several 4-night, 5-day backpacking trips in Bandelier’s backcountry. Registration forms are available at the Espanola and Los Alamos YMCA teen centers, but must be turned in to the Los Alamos Teen Center, 475 20th St.

The first trip, a GOLD

July Night Sky Show At Nature Center Planetarium

on June 28, 2016 - 7:48pm

The Milky Way. Photo by Elena Giorgi

PEEC News:

Visit moons, planets, stars and other celestial objects and learn more about what is visible in the night sky this month during a night sky show, 7-7:45 p.m. Friday, July 1 in the planetarium at the Los Alamos Nature Center.

This program is ideal for stargazers who want to learn more. View star clusters, nebulae, double stars and other objects with binoculars this month.

Because there are just 50 seats in the planetarium, visitors are asked to purchase tickets at the Los Alamos Nature Center or call to reserve a seat.

Bee Deaths Threaten Summer Picnics And Barbecues

on June 28, 2016 - 11:21am
No bees, no food conference. Courtesy photo
ENM News:
ALBUQUERQUE  Chile, watermelon and juicy tomatoes are among the summer staples at risk if bee colonies continue to collapse at unprecedented rates, beekeeper Tyler Schutte and Environment New Mexico said at a conference Thursday..

Bees pollinate most of the world’s most common crops, including seasonal favorites such as peaches, asparagus, and cherries. But the U.S. is losing about a third of its bee colonies each year, alarming beekeepers, farmers and chefs along with environmental advocates.

Lightning Starts Small Fire At Valles Caldera Preserve

on June 27, 2016 - 10:28pm

The Valles Caldera National Preserve. Courtesy photo

VCNP News:

JEMEZ SPRINGS – A new wildland fire is burning in the Valles Caldera National Preserve. The Big Hat fire, discovered after last week’s thunderstorms, is estimated to be approximately two acres in size.

It is located on Banco Bonito, east of the staging area in the southwestern portion of the preserve.

Consent Order Governing Legacy Cleanup At Los Alamos Finalized

on June 27, 2016 - 1:18pm
NMED News:
SANTA FE  The New Mexico Environment Department signed and finalized the Consent Order between the State of New Mexico Environment Department and the U.S. Department of Energy’s Environmental Management office, which will guide and govern the cleanup of legacy waste at Los Alamos National Laboratory.
“The new Consent Order will accelerate the pace of environmental restoration activities in and around Los Alamos,” New Mexico Environment Secretary Ryan Flynn said.

Gardeners Take Over Nature Center Tuesday

on June 27, 2016 - 1:16pm

Visit the Los Alamos Nature Center Tuesday to learn valuable tips on gardening. Photo by Siobhan Niklasson


Green-thumbed gardeners will be taking over the Los Alamos Nature Center at 6 p.m. Tuesday.

The Master Gardeners, Los Alamos Garden Club and Summit Garden Club will all gather at the nature center to share valuable information and answer questions related to gardening. This event is free and open to the public.

This fun evening will take place at the Los Alamos Nature Center at 2600 Canyon Road. It is free to attend, and no registration is required.

CCNS Challenges EPA To Terminate LANL Outfall From Clean Water Act Permit

on June 27, 2016 - 6:56am
CCNS News:
Outfall No. 051 at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) is a discharge pipe connected to the Radioactive Liquid Waste Treatment Facility (RLWTF). 
After November 2010, the RLWTF became a zero-liquid-discharge system. Since then LANL has been using a Mechanical Evaporator System (MES) to evaporate treated water into the air, and nothing has been discharged through the Outfall. Nevertheless, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) still includes Outfall 051 in the Clean Water Act permit that it issues to LANL. 
This has a serious impact.

A Starry Night At PEEC Honors Sen. Martin Heinrich

on June 26, 2016 - 8:50am
'A Starry Night in Seville' includes an auction with items ranging from sculptures and paintings to a weekend in a cabin and a hike to see petroglyphs. This road runner sculpture is on its way to the auction. Courtesy photo

PEEC News:

Everyone who’s in town July 2 is in for a treat. Pajarito Environmental Education Center (PEEC) is partnering with Pig + Fig and Pajarito Brewpub to create a special dinner 5:30-7:30 p.m. Saturday July 2 at the Los Alamos Nature Center.


Alert: Snakes Are Out, Active And Biting Dogs

on June 25, 2016 - 9:09am

A horned rattlesnake. Courtesy/wikipedia

News Alert:

Christine DuBois asked the Los Alamos Daily Post to alert the community about recent incidents of snakes biting dogs on local trails.

Her dog was bitten by a rattlesnake just northwest of Mitchell Trail Head at around 5:15 p.m. Friday. The snake did not warn before it struck her dog in the back leg. She rushed him to Smith Veterinary Hospital in Santa Fe where he received two vials of anti venom. While still unsure as to his prognosis, the vet was hopeful.

In another recent incident, a local search and rescue dog was bitten by a

Los Alamos Nature Center: How To Find The Right Volunteer Opportunity

on June 25, 2016 - 8:04am
Christa Tyson is the volunteer coordinator at PEEC. Courtesy photo

Natali Steinburg has volunteered at PEEC since 2005. Courtesy photo
PEEC Volunteer Coordinator
In the midst of political season, I like to remind people of an anonymous quote that has stuck with me over the years; “Volunteering is the ultimate exercise in democracy. You vote in elections once a year, but when you volunteer, you vote every day about the kind of community you want to live in.”
There are numerous volunteer opportunities available with the Los Alamos Nature Center.