Great Cities, Great Lakes, Great Basin. The watershed of the Great Lakes, St. Lawrence River, and Gulf of St. Lawrence - the Great Basin - spans from Duluth, MN to the Atlantic Ocean and is home to more than 50 million people. Despite hundreds of important efforts to clean and protect the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River, none addressed the binational waterways and their surrounding lands comprehensively, as a whole ecosystem. The Great Lakes Century Vision changes this - watch this webcast to learn about this revolutionary vision for the Great Lakes and our communities!
The New Hampshire Dragonfly Survey was a citizen science project conducted in 2007-2011 as a partnership between NH Audubon and the NH Fish and Game Department. Over the course of the survey, over 200 volunteers were trained in dragonfly identification and survey methodology, and over 100 people eventually submitted data. Their collected efforts yielded over 18,000 records of 157 species and generated roughly $150,000 dollars of in-kind match. Learn about this powerful program in this month's webcast!
Feral swine can cause considerable damage to property and pose a disease threat to domestic animals. The rooting and wallowing activities of feral swine can cause serious erosion to riparian areas and wetlands, and damage to agricultural crops. These destructive animals have been known to tear through livestock and game fences, consume animal feed, and prey upon small livestock. Learn all about them in this webcast!
The Adirondack Park in upstate New York is comprised of 2.4 million hectares of public and private lands that hold some of the most ecologically intact ecosystems in the United States. Most of the park remains relatively free of invasive species, which presents an exciting opportunity in conservation at a scale rarely seen anywhere else in the country. It was not until 2011 that private funding enabled the Adirondack Park Invasive Plant Program (APIPP) to formalize its regional response team approach. Learn about a collaborative conservation approach in this webcast!
In 2006, Nectandra Institute began working with community water management associations (CWMAs) to promote and carry out cloud forest conservation primarily in the upper Balsa River Watershed in Costa Rica. There are some 2,000 CWMAs in the country. These volunteer-run organizations, representing entire communities through their general membership, provide potable water service all over the rural areas with little government support. CWMAs are keenly aware of the hydrological importance of montane forests, making them natural allies in the effort to protect these ecosystems. The changing climate’s anticipated effects on precipitation patterns and consequently the ecosystem dynamics of these forests makes concrete, protective and long-lasting action a real necessity. In response to this challenge, Nectandra Institute launched its Eco-Loan Financing (ELF) Program, which couples land acquisition financing with forest and watershed education. ELF enables the communities to own and control their water sources, while also providing them with the knowledge and information to restore forests and maintain the watershed.
The physical removal of invasive plants can generate a significant volume of materials. Much of this material is bagged and sent to landfills, but is there another way to manage this material? Joe Van Rossum of the University of Wisconsin-Extension will present results from his research on the fate of garlic mustard and common buckthorn seeds placed into compost piles typical at large-scale compost facilities. The results also provide insight into the fate of invasive plant materials that may be inadvertently delivered to municipal yard waste sites.
Wild rice (Manoomin) is a cereal grain that is harvested and enjoyed throughout the Upper Great Lakes Region by people of varied cultural backgrounds. It has been a central component of the culture of the Anishinaabe people in the region for thousands of years and continues to be of great importance to many tribal communities. Its importance is noted by the fact that the Menominee tribe was named for this plant. Wild rice is also a key element of Great Lakes coastal and interior wetlands that provides food, cover, and spawning habitat for a variety of wildlife species. Unfortunately, wild rice populations have declined throughout much of the plant’s historic range, due in large part to human impacts. Given the strong cross-cultural importance of this grain, sustaining regional populations of wild rice requires a commitment to multicultural approaches that recognize, respect, and weave together ways of knowing that are influenced by both traditional knowledge and western science.
Deer play important roles in the ecology of Michigan, and in the culture of the people who live in and visit the Great Lakes State. How are decisions about the management of the state’s deer herds made? What goals are we working to achieve through that management? How can individuals or groups of individuals become involved in those decisions or work together to achieve similar goals at a local scale? Brent Rudolph, the Deer and Elk Program Leader for the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, will discuss and engage us in dialogue on these points in our next webcast.