Pitkin County’s Healthy Rivers Board handed out thousands of dollars in grants Thursday, including one project that has high schoolers keeping a 24-hour watch on wildlife.
Two ninth graders, Anja Simpson and Charles Mowbray, from Colorado Rocky Mountain School were awarded $933 to outfit an osprey camera with night vision and a microphone.
It was an unconventional request in a packed grant cycle, but chair Lisa Tasker said the Healthy Rivers Board embraces the students’ project.
“I think that understanding what ospreys do and putting that in as part of their science program made a lot of sense to us because ospreys are so connected to the river,” Tasker said.
There will be a link to the students’ osprey cam from the Healthy Rivers website.
The board awarded a total of nearly $30,000, including grants to the Aspen Global Change Institute and the Roaring Fork Conservancy. The board is still considering two larger funding requests. Colorado Parks and Wildlife is asking $80,000 for work to protect native cutthroat trout in the Roaring Fork watershed, and the Aspen Valley Land Trust wants $300,000 to restore a stretch of the Crystal River through Carbondale.