Deer have expanded their range and increased dramatically in abundance worldwide in recent decades. While research through the northeastern U.S. has shown that deer can lead to decreased vegetation density and diversity, and declines in forest regeneration, debates over deer management in urban and suburban areas often demand local data on deer impacts. I will present data from various research (including exclosure studies, vegetation and browse damage surveys, and sentinel seedling tracking) in southeast Michigan parks and preserves over the past 20 years to outline deer impacts on various native plants, including trees and wildflowers. I will discuss implications for forest regeneration, pollinator interactions, and other community processes.
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Jacqueline Courteau - Jacqueline Courteau is an ecologist and independent researcher/consultant with over 20 years experience with Michigan ecosystems.
Lisa Brush - Executive Director, The Stewardship Network. Lisa has worked in the environmental field in Michigan for the last fifteen years. She is currently the Executive Director of the Stewardship Network and has been involved with the Network since its inception more than 10 years ago. She has a wealth of experience helping non-scientific people understand scientific issues. For over nine years, as she has built and coordinated The Stewardship Network, she has emphasized effective and meaningful stakeholder involvement in developing and implementing all aspects of this program. She has a M.S. in Natural Resources from the University of Michigan and a B.A. (Science in Society) from Wesleyan University.