Rocky Mountain Wild will host the 4th Colorado Endangered Species Week, May 10-16, 2020, with the national Endangered Species Day occurring on May 15 and Colorado Public Lands Day occurring on May 16. This week is dedicated to the mission of educating the public and working towards the protection of the over 300 plant and animal species that are at risk in Colorado, including our state animal, the bighorn sheep!
Typically, during this week, Rocky Mountain Wild and our partners organize speakers, fundraisers, and other activities along the Front Range, with major events occurring in Boulder and Denver. This year, as we stay Safe at Home, we will be offering a suite of online activities each day.
Governor Jared Polis has officially proclaimed May 10-May 16, 2020 Colorado Endangered Species Week! Check out the proclamation here.
Schedule of Events:
For each day during Colorado Endangered Species Week, we’ll be focusing on one of our important species or wild places here in Colorado. Each day will feature a suite of activities, including things to read, direct actions to do, and things to watch to help us learn about and advocate for our Colorado imperiled, threatened, and endangered species!
Sunday, May 10, Join the Herd
Species: Bighorn Sheep Scientific Name: Ovis canadensis Current Status: Endangered
We’re starting out our Colorado Endangered Species Week in a big way, focusing on our official state animal: bighorn sheep. Check out all the things you can do to join the herd to celebrate and protect bighorn sheep!
A huge thank you to our Join the Herd event partner, Wild Connections!
Monday, May 11, Join the Pack
Species: Gray Wolf Scientific Name: Canis lupus Current Status: Endangered
Gray wolves used to roam across Colorado, an important apex predator feeding on bison, elk, and mule deer. But by 1940, the species had been extirpated (a species that no longer exists in the wild in its historical habitat, but still exists other places). A few individual gray wolves (and one current pack) have found their way back to Colorado, but not enough to create a stable, biologically diverse population. This November, Colorado voters will vote on Initiative 107 to reintroduce wolves to Colorado. Check out all the things you can do to join the pack to celebrate and protect gray wolves, including our live Wolf Power Hour and Ask Me Anything presentation at noon!
Tuesday, May 12, Wild Wolf Creek Pass
What Is It: The most important wildlife linkage in the San Juan Mountains. Species of Concern: Canada lynx, bear, elk, and more. Current Status: Threatened with the construction of a "village" for 10,000 people.
For decades, an out-of-state developer has wanted to build the “Village at Wolf Creek” – a city of 10,000 people, hotels, condos, retail shops, and parking lots – at the top of Wolf Creek Pass. Wolf Creek Pass is a remote landscape surrounded on all sides by National Forest land. It’s also the most important wildlife linkage in the San Juan Mountains. Connecting the South San Juan Wilderness with the Weminuche Wilderness, this area provides a vital wildlife movement corridor for Canada lynx, bear, elk, and other species. Check out all the things you can do to learn about the importance of wildlife corridors, and especially the one at Wolf Creek Pass, including our live Wild Wolf Creek Power Hour and Ask Me Anything at noon!
Wednesday, May 13, Tal-us About Pika
Species: American pika Scientific Name: Ochotona princeps Current Status: Imperiled but not listed on the Endangered Species Act
The American pika has adapted to thrive in environments that are harshly cold for most of the year, but they also make the American pika vulnerable to a warming climate. Check out all the things you can do to learn more about American pikas, including our live Pika Power Hour and Ask Me Anything at noon with pika experts!
A huge thank you to our Tal-us About Pika event partners, Colorado Fourteeners Initiative, Colorado Mesa University, Independence Pass Foundation, Mountain Studies Institute, Sheep Mountain Alliance, Walking Mountains Science Center, and Wilderness Workshop!
Thursday, May 14, Hanging Out With Bats
Species: Colorado Bats Current Status: Unknown
There are 18 bat species that call Colorado home, but we don’t know very much about them. Bats face a number of threats in Colorado, including habitat loss and climate change, and periodically throughout human history, fear. But not much is known about the population status of most species of bats in Colorado. Check out all the things you can do to learn about and hang out with bats, including our live Bat Power Hour and Ask Me Anything at noon with bat experts!
A huge thank you to bat conservationist and environmental educator Kristen Lear and our partners Climbers for Bat Conservation, People & Pollinators Action Network, and San Luis Valley Ecosystem Council!
Friday, May 15, Endangered Species Day
When: The third Friday in May. What: A day to learn about, celebrate, and advocate for the protection of endangered species.
Colorado has many threatened and endangered species on the Endangered Species list as well as imperiled species and those of special concern. For Endangered Species Day, we’ve put together some resources to learn more about, celebrate, and advocate for the protection of endangered species. Including a live event! We’ll be hosting an Endangered Species Parade and we need your participation! Whether you’ve finished a coloring page you’d like to share, have original drawings or other art, poems or stories, zines, outfits, make-up, or any other creative endeavor to celebrate your favorite species, we want to see it during the parade! Check out all our resources and see how you can take part in the parade.
Saturday, May 16, Colorado Public Lands Day
When: The third Saturday in May. What: A holiday to celebrate our public lands across Colorado.
For Colorado Endangered Species Week, we’d like to celebrate Colorado Public Lands Day by talking about the importance of inclusion and equity in our public lands. Public lands technically belong to and benefit all of us, but certain populations have never felt welcome in our public lands. Others have never seen themselves represented and instead have seen themselves actively erased from the history of public lands. Check out all the things you can do to protect our public lands and help make them a more inclusive place for everyone!
Help us advertise these events! We’ve put together a media kit to help you share!
Looking for even more to do? Visit Endangered Species Coalition’s Endangered Species Day webpage for more things to do.
Support the Week by Purchasing Last Year’s Amazing Tee!
Last year for Colorado Endangered Species Week, our artist sponsor Julie Kitzes designed this stunning tee shirt featuring a brown bat, the sale of which will help fund Colorado Endangered Species Week!
Please take a look at our modified Colorado Endangered Species Week Partnership Packet and contact Chris if you are interested in joining us.
For the Kids (& Kids at Heart):
Captain Planet Foundation’s Project Hero: a free, project-based learning tool and framework that engages young people in Quests to help threatened species and ecosystems in their own communities.
Feel free to download any of our coloring pages! And if you love how it turned out, please send it to us and we’ll post it on our Instagram page!
- American pika coloring page
- Bighorn sheep coloring page
- Boreal toad coloring page
- Canada lynx coloring page
- Greater sage-grouse coloring page
- Gunnison sage-grouse coloring page
- Townsend’s big-eared bat coloring page
- Wolverine coloring page
- Colorado Parks & Wildlife coloring pages
- Rocky Mountain Wolf Project kids corner (coloring books, puppets, and masks)
Listen to Wes Tank rap Dr. Seuss’s “The Lorax” over Dr. Dre beats. If you enjoy the reading, consider supporting Wes on Patreon.