NMSU scientists take inventory of desert monument

June 5, 2018

LAS CRUCES, N.M. (AP) — Scientists and geographers from New Mexico State University are helping to locate and record natural and cultural resources on the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument.

The university says the work is funded through a five-year grant from the Bureau of Land Management.

The information will be used to better manage resources across the monument and to create a database accessible to the public.

The geologists on the team are interested in the area’s volcanic formations. They say the Potrillo volcanic field was last active between about 1 million and 14,000 years ago.

The scientists say the monument’s volcanic history also contributes to the diversity of the soil and the plants being studied.

Archaeologists will be studying cave sites and other evidence of past human habitation in the area.

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