July Forest Insect & Disease Newsletter

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In this issue:

Question of the month
Balsam fir needle rust
Eriophyid gall mites on maple
What happend to forest tent caterpillar?
Spruce needle rust
Yellow-headed spruce sawfly
Forest tent caterpillar season - from the archives
New Forest Health Specialist for Southern Minnesota
Control of Oak Wilt in Bluff Country
Scattered Bur Oak Mortality in Southern Minnesota
Emerald Ash Borer Update in Houston County
Ash Trees with Thin Crowns
Eastern spruce budworm in Minnesota

Volunteer Supervisor Opportunity

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My name is Ali Creeger and I am currently interning for Great River Greening, a non-profit organization whose mission is to secure the legacy of Minnesota lands and waters through community-based restoration.

As the summer is winding down, Great River Greening is getting ready for an exciting fall volunteer event season. Starting in the end of September, we will have variety of restoration volunteer opportunities across the metro. A crucial part of our volunteer events are our Volunteer Supervisors, who make sure every event is as successful as possible by training and managing our restoration volunteers. We are currently recruiting for supervisors and believe that members of the Master Naturalist would excel in this role and would also be able to complete necessary volunteer hours.

Before the event season starts, we want to make sure our supervisors are fully prepared to lead the restoration volunteers by holding a free supervisor training session that is mandatory for new supervisors, but open to all current supervisors as well as a refresher. The training will be held in the Roosevelt meeting room at the Roosevelt Library on August 16th 10:30am to 12:30am. Breakfast and snacks will be provided.

I've attached our Volunteer Supervisor Flyer to this email for more information. Please pass this along to anyone that you believe would be interested in this leadership position. You can also learn more about Volunteer Supervisors on our website.

Please feel free to contact me with any questions about our training, events or organization.

Thank you, and I hope to see you at the training!

Ali Creeger
Great River Greening

Sept 27 Whitetail Woods Regional Park Grand Opening

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We're opening a new regional park in Dakota County
Whitetail Woods Regional Park

Mark your calendar and plan to join us
to celebrate this momentous occasion
at a grand opening on

Sept. 27, 2014
11 am-3 pm


Whitetail Woods Regional Park
17100 Station Trail

Featuring live music by Twin Cities sensation The Honeydogs,
horse-drawn wagon rides, a 5K Fun Run/Walk and lots of food and fun.

Whitetail Woods Regional Park is located in Empire Township just east of the City of Rosemount off County Road 46 -- the latest addition to a 4,000-acre natural area in the heart of Dakota County that includes Vermillion Highlands Modified Wildlife Management Area, Vermillion River Wildlife and Aquatic Management Area, and University of Minnesota's UMore Park.

Read the recent Pioneer Press article about Whitetail Woods Regional Park HERE.

We're looking for volunteers to bring the grand opening celebration to life.

For more information on how you can help, visit:

It'll be a history making day in Dakota County.

Hope to see you there!

Lester River Rendezvous Trail Tour guides needed

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've been approached by the folks organizing the Lester River Rendezvous, a tremendous community event in late-September that sees thousands of visitors, to see if we could organize some "trail" tours. They are looking for a 15- and 30-minute tour options.

"The tours could highlight any furs or feathers, bones and sculls, or be led by a naturalist who can speak to flora/ fauna and all that can be found so close to home on our City's trails. This might even be a good education opportunity to talk about the gypsy moth, emerald ash bower, and other non-native invasive plant species."

I was hoping this group might have some interest in taking on this project or have ideas of individuals, organizations or the like that might be interested in helping out.

Thoughts? Let the brainstorming begin.


Cheryl Skafte
Volunteer Coordinator | City of Duluth
411 W. 1st Street | Duluth, MN 55802
218-730-4334 (office) | 218-341-8454 (cell)
cskafte@duluthmn.gov | www.duluthmn.gov

8/12 Blue Zones

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Blue Zones
9 Lessons for Living Longer

Presented by Judy Zimmer

Northland Arboretum
Tuesday August 12, 2014
5:00 p.m.
Northland Arboretum
Members - $10

Non-Members - $20

The ever popular "Blue Zones, 9 lessons for living longer" book, written by Dan Buettner is coming to the Northland Arboretum.

Learn how to live longer - people in the Blue Zones reach age 100 at 10 times the average rate. Join the community - what can you expect in a Blue Zones community?
Better health, greater civic engagement, lower healthcare costs, happier citizens.

Your speaker Judy Zimmer tackles the most common myths and offers a scientific backed blueprint for the average American to live another 12 quality years. Judy is a candid and energizing speaker grounded in real world experience. She is a Master Certified Life Coach and specializes in helping companies and individuals maximize their potential.

This is an event you don't want to miss!
Call the Arboretum to registration - 218-829-8770

8/11 Project WILD and PLT K-8 Workshop

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Project WILD and PLT K-8 Workshop
9 AM to 3 PM
River Bend Nature Center, Faribault
Project WILD and Project Learning Tree (PLT) are award-winning environmental education programs in Minnesota. This workshop is based on activities for K-8 students and will focus on projects, crafts, and games related to Minnesota state standards.

You can only get these activity guides by attending a workshop.
Register today!

Workshop participants will receive:
- Project WILD K-12 Activity Guide (112 activities)
- Project Learning Tree K-8 Activity Guide (96 activities)
- WILD and PLT State supplements from the DNR
- Other educational materials
- 6 CEUs

Credit/Debit cards accepted in person or over the phone at (507) 332 7151.
River Bend Nature Center 1000 Rustad Rd Faribault, MN 55021
More Information:
Contact Josh Sweet at 507-332 7151 or by email at sweet@rbnc.org.

The direct link is http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/calendar/app?jsp=/templates/event.jsp&id=38478

Sept 5 & 6 Lake Superior Wilderness Conference

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Lake Superior Wilderness Conference
September 5 & 6 · Duluth MN
With the passage of the Wilderness Act on September 3, 1964, a new course for conservation was chartered. Fifty years later, we think this is still worth celebrating.

Join National Geographic Adventurers of the Year Dave and Amy Freeman, canoeists Gary and Joanie McGuffin, Vice President of the Bush Foundation Jaime Pinkham of the Nez Perce Tribe, Jim Pfitzer portraying Aldo Leopold, and many others to inspire and challenge us.

Sponsored by the Sigurd Olson Environmental Institute in partnership with over 15 conservation organizations.

September 5-6, 2014
Inn on Lake Superior · Duluth, MN
$60 per person, student rate $25

Registration and details: northland.edu/wilderness

Summer From Shore to Shore Newsletter

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From Shore to Shore Newsletter

Greetings Shoreland and Water Quality Steward!

The Summer issue of the "From Shore to Shore" newsletter is now posted on the website for you to view and/or download. To access it, please go to: http://shorelandmanagement.org/shore_shore/

This issue includes the following articles:
Minimal Impact Design Standards (MIDS) and Low Impact Development (LID)
Why Does a Lake Become Green and Stinky?
What's It? Slimy Blob!
Snapshots: Water Resources Team Programming & Research - Recent Past & Upcoming Opportunities
Please feel free to share the newsletter with others; reproduce articles for other newsletters (please credit "From Shore to Shore" as the source); and submit shoreland and water quality articles, pictures of projects, upcoming local events, and suggestions for topics for upcoming issues. Your input and feedback are always welcome!

If you have difficulty accessing the website, please let me know. Also, please notify Heidi Olson-Manska, olsonh@umn.edu, if your email address changes. If you wish to unsubscribe to this newsletter, please send an email to olsonh@umn.edu with "Unsubscribe to From Shore to Shore" in the subject line.

Karen Terry, Extension Educator-Water Resource Team
University of Minnesota Extension
Regional Office, Morris
WC Research/Outreach Ctr.
46352 State Highway 329
Morris, MN 56267

Voice: 320-589-1711
Fax: 320-589-4870
Email: kterry@umn.edu

How's the Water?

Minnesota's water has come a long way from the days when raw sewage flowed untreated into rivers as a matter of course. However, there is still a lot of work to be done if we are going to restore the impaired lakes, rivers, and streams in the state.

Read more at: http://www.pca.state.mn.us/index.php/water/hows-the-water/hows-the-water.html

Should Minnesotans Water Their Yards Less?

Residential water use varies widely in the Twin Cities. Andover, an Anoka County suburb of 30,000, is the biggest per capita user, according to an MPR News analysis of data the DNR collects from cities.

Read more at: http://blogs.mprnews.org/todays-question/2014/07/should-minnesotans-water-their-yards-less/

Beneath The Surface - Minnesota's Pending Groundwater Challenge

Even in the land of 10,000 lakes, water is no longer unlimited. Lakes shrink, groundwater drops, wells go dry or get contaminated. Some cities have to look harder for good municipal water or pay more to treat it.

Learn more at: http://minnesota.publicradio.org/projects/2014/01/ground-level-beneath-the-surface/

USDA Giving Up To $50M for Red River Conservation

The federal Agriculture Department is providing up to $50 million over the next five years for conservation funding in the Red River Basin in the Upper Midwest.

Learn more at: http://kstp.com/article/stories/S3493131.shtml?cat=12196

Stepping into the Future: Technology Makes a Differenc for the Faribault SWCD

Inspecting drainage systems? There's an app for that.

Read more at: http://www.bwsr.state.mn.us/news/webnews/july2014/3.pdf

Homes, Mills Feel Rising Waters in Northern Minnesota

Torrential weekend rains over the Rainy River basin are causing record setting floods along Minnesota's border with Canada.

Read more at: http://www.mprnews.org/story/2014/06/16/flooding-northwest-minnesota

Roadsides for Wildlife

Although these ribbons of green make up only a small fraction of our land area, researchers have found them to be highly productive nesting sites.

Read more at: http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/roadsidesforwildlife/index.html

Midwest Rural Migration Network & Resources

Notes and proceedings from the 2014 Symposium on Small Towns.

Read more at: https://sites.google.com/a/morris.umn.edu/midwest-rural-migration/symposium-proceedings

11 Ways to Use Less Water on Your Lawn

Many Twin Cities homeowners see their water bills spike each summer as they start watering their lawns. Here are some tips - from modest changes to the extreme - that could help you use less water this summer.

Read more at: http://blogs.mprnews.org/ground-level/2014/07/11-ways-to-use-less-water-on-your-lawn/

Draft/public noticed TMDLs

Draft TMDLs go through an extensive technical review and public notice process before the MPCA submits them to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for final approval. Public comments on draft TMDL reports are typically accepted for 30 days (see schedules for specific reports below). If there are substantial changes made to the draft as a result of public comment, it will be re-public noticed. Otherwise, the TMDL is submitted to EPA for final approval a minimum of 30 days following the conclusion of the public notice period. Some TMDLs receive significant public comments which may require several weeks for response preparation. In addition, the EPA typically completes its review of the final draft within 30-days of receiving it from the MPCA, but some studies may require additional time.
Crow Wing Watershed TMDLs: Multiple Impairments (Metro)
Public Notice open for comment July 14, 2014 - August 12, 2014


Events Calendar

NEMO St. Croix Workshop-on-the-Water Program
Date: July 29
Location: Hudson, WI
Contact: John Bilotta, bilot002@umn.edu
Phone: 651-480-7708

Stormwater U: Stormwater Practices Maintenance & Certification
Date: July 30-31
Location: Blaine, MN
Contact: Shane Missaghi, miss0035@umn.edu, 651-480-7759

2014 Clean Water Summit - Green
Infrastructure for Clean Water: Costs &
Benefits to Our Communities
Date: September 11
Location: Chaska, MN

NEMO West Metro - Lessons Across the
Landscape Workshop
Date: September 25
Location: TBD
Contact: John Bilotta, 651-480-7708,

Water Resources Conference
Date: October 14-15
Location: St. Paul, MN
Contact: U of MN Water Resources
Center, 612-624-9282, umwrc@umn.edu

For the most current calendar items and more details, visit http://www1.extension.umn.edu/environment/water/

9/2-12/7 Minnesota Watershed Specialist Training

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The Minnesota Watershed Specialist Training

is designed with lessons that apply immediately to your work today
AND prepare you to grow into your next job.

Register now for the fall session: September 2 through December 7, 2014

More info and application at: z.umn.edu/wst

WST is . . .
an online, interactive course designed for local professionals who are dedicated to improving and protecting water resources. Join local government staff from around the state facing similar challenges in developing and implementing TMDLs, WRAPS, stormwater plans, Comprehensive Plans, and other water restoration and protection efforts, large and small.

Who is the course for?
The people who take this course are mostly staff of SWCDs, WDs, county ESDs, or cities. The course is also appropriate for staff of agencies and private firms that work with local government, and for students aspiring to careers in water resources.

Participants are generally comfortable in one aspect of their job, such as running a monitoring program or presenting to citizens' groups. But effectively running a water resource project requires comfort with many aspects: water policy, building partnerships, engaging landowners, interpreting hydrologic data, planning evaluations and adapting to the results, writing work plans, evaluating implementation alternatives, and communicating all this to diverse audiences who have other priorities.

What will you learn?
Participants in this course learn about the set of tools needed to effectively protect water resources and they learn to integrate the social and physical aspects of their job. Participants are able to immediately practice using what they learn to address concerns on the job. They learn skills including assessing the community and stakeholders to more effectively engage them in problem-solving, identifying social and physical data needs, writing a communication strategy, justifying implementation activities that will best address their water resource issues, and pulling it all together into a work plan that could be used for a grant proposal.

More info and application at: z.umn.edu/wst

Minnesota's beloved state bird is currently just a visitor on Grindstone Lake.

Our state bird, the Common Loon, is a regular presence on Grindstone Lake in the summer. However, the loons are just visiting and have never chosen to nest on our lake. Loons often nest on floating mats of vegetation, and this habitat is absent in Grindstone Lake since the lake drops off from the shoreline very quickly.

The MN Department of Natural Resources' non-game wildlife program donated a frame of a loon nesting platform to us this spring. We added dead emergent vegetation as a base, mixed with mud, and planted cattails and ferns. Our platform is anchored just off the point on the Center shoreline.

Although we did not have nesting loons this year, possibly due to the fact the platform was not installed until near the end of May, we hope to make the platform more attractive to nesting loons next year by having it installed right after ice out.

If you are interested in installing a loon nesting platform on your lake next spring, click here for information and plans.

Upcoming events at the Center

Visit our Calendar of Events for information about upcoming events
Aug. 4 - Dinner at the Lake with Dr. John Abraham
Aug. 4-6 - Summer Institute for Environmental Education
Aug. 24-29 - Road Scholar Migration Mysteries
Aug. 31-Sept. 5 - Road Scholar Migration Mysteries
Sept. 27 - 'Autumn at the Audubon' Open House & Craft Fair/Farmer's Market (vendors
Sept. 27 - Renewable Trail Run/Walk
Oct. 3-5 - Women's Wellness & Adventure Weekend
Oct. 10-12 - ACNW/Northland College 40 Year Reunion
Oct. 24-26 - Wilderness Navigation
Oct. 25 - Dinner at the Lake
Oct. 24-26 - Fall Phenology with Larry Weber Weekend
Nov. 1-2 - Reading the Landscape
Dec. 27-30 - Winter Family Escape

Join us as a member

We depend on member support to help us continue our important work, including:

Educating and fostering environmental stewardship in thousands of K12 students annually
Enhancements for wildlife
Wetland and prairie restoration
Wildlife rehab and care
Residential and day programs for youth, families and adults
Community events
Renewable energy systems and energy conservation

Learn about the benefits of becoming an ACNW member by visiting the Support Us page on our website.

Get the Lead Out
When fishing sinkers are lost, they can be picked up by loons or other waterfowl like ringneck ducks and trumpeter swans, who routinely swallow pebbles on the bottom of lakes to help in digestion. As the lead is exposed to stomach acid, it slowly poisons the bird. One sinker is all it takes.

In areas where loons breed, biologists have found that lead poisoning from sinkers or jigs may account for up to 50 percent of dead adult loons.

If you are a fisherperson, PLEASE make the switch NOW to non-lead sinkers and jigs. Currently there are many non-toxic sinker alternatives on the market.
If your local bait and tackle store doesn't stock unleaded sinkers, ask them to or take your business elsewhere.

Never throw old tackle into the water or on shore. Consider lead sinkers and jigs as toxic material and dispose of them at household hazardous waste collection sites.

Help ensure that future Even if you don't fish, share this information with family and friends who do.

For more information on how you can 'Get the Lead Out', visit the Get the Lead Out page at Minnesota Pollution Control Agency

From: www.dnr.state.mn.us/

National Wildlife Federation is gearing up for its annual Hike & Seek (www.hikeandseek.org) event on September 20th at Lebanon Hills Regional Park, Eagan, MN and they are reaching out for your assistance with filling volunteer positions.

Hike & Seek is a cross between a scavenger hunt and a 1-2 mile nature walk with live animals, activities and fun interactive stations along the trail. This event was developed in 2010 to provide an exciting new concept for families with young children and make it easy for them to spend a few hours connecting with nature.

Local volunteers, especially naturalist volunteers, are essential for Hike & Seek we need help with a variety of positions. Volunteer job descriptions are located on our website at: http://www.nwf.org/Hike-And-Seek/Volunteer.aspx. If you have colleagues, friends or local associations that would be interested in volunteering please be sure to pass along this information. If you or someone you know is interested in helping make Hike & Seek a success, please contact me.

Your time is important to us and your assistance is greatly appreciated. If you have any questions or concerns, please let me know.

Thank you very much!

Aug 5-7 Volunteer in the DNR tent at Farmfest

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A volunteer opportunity in the DNR tent at Farmfest near Redwood Falls on August 5 - 7.

What: Volunteers assist DNR professionals with a variety of activities related to outdoor skills and knowledge for youth, specifically:
- Wood duck and bluebird box building (pre-cut, just need to screw together with cordless drills)
- MinnAqua activities such as casting and fish printing, fish tattoo application
- Archery shooting (must have archery in the school training or moderate archery experience)

When: Two - 4 hour shifts on 8/5, 6, 7 (length depending on your preference)

Conditions to expect: 4000 to 6000 people go through the tent over the three days, youth get fairly engaged, it can be very hot in the afternoons, dust can be an issue if it is very windy, we tend to have a good time, water is provided, free ticket into Farmfest for the day, generally you will be standing most of the time.

Note: We are required to do back ground checks of volunteers for Farmfest.

Deadline: 7/23

Contact Brenda Black at brenda.black@state.mn.us or 507-359-6011.

Maplewood Nature Center
Friday August 8th, 8:30am - 12:30pm
Cost $77
More details at www.amithompson.com

Email ami@amithompson.com to register
(Limited Space, RSVP required)

Get a bit of dragonfly background knowledge, a lot of hands-on outside exploration, the
beautifully illustrated full-color paperback or electronic Dragonfly Curriculum Guide with
17 classroom activities, and 4 CEUs.

The Dragonfly Workshop Includes:

 Outdoor hands-on field time capturing and examining as many dragonflies as we can catch
 Dragonfly life history 101
 Techniques for dragon and damselfly ID
 Practice using dragonfly classroom activities
 A full-color paperback and electronic version of the Dragonfly Curriculum Guide, including 17 activities
 Four CEUs
 Connections to all of the NGSS Scientific Practices: asking questions, using models, investigating, computational thinking, constructing explanations, argumentation, and communication

Quotes from previous participants:

"I think this is the BEST training, related to science, I have ever received."

"Fun. Organized. Professional. Great take aways. Good Knowledge of the Science! Thank you!!"

"Really well prepared workshop and you get a lot for you money. Tons of free resources materials and activities. We were always moving and learning something new, never bored!"

July Mississippi Messages

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We are very excited to announce that FMR has been selected as a finalist for the 2014 Mission Award for Advocacy! Help FMR take the prize by voting online if you are also associated with another member organization of the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits.

Read more »


On June 24, 2014, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency's Citizens Board approved new, long-overdue standards for excess nutrients and algae in Minnesota's rivers and streams. The development of these standards was a priority for Friends of the Mississippi River and represents an important victory for water quality in Minnesota.

These nutrient standards will have innumerable benefits for Minnesota which include: rejuvenating the health of our waterways, improving our economy by bolstering recreational businesses and tourism, and giving our citizens peace of mind that our state has appropriate standards for one of our most common river pollutants.

Read more »


The DNR has released draft Mississippi River Corridor Critical Area (MRCCA) rules and opened their public comment period that will close August 15, 2014. Your voice, values, and concerns need to be heard to protect, enhance, and restore the Mississippi River corridor and the Mississippi National River and Recreation Area (MNRRA) in the Twin Cities area for generations to come.

Read more »


Please save the evening of October 1, 2014 in your calendar to attend FMR's 13th annual "Evening Celebrating the Mississippi River." The event will be on the river again this year at the stunning Weisman Art Museum! The evening will feature storyteller Kevin Kling, a fantastic river oriented live auction, great food and beverages, and more. Invitations will be sent in August, so it's not too soon to contact John at jbriel@fmr.org or 651-222-2193 x19 to make sure you're on the invite list.

Read more »


Congratulations to the city of Roseville for earning the Blue Star Award. Roseville, like all Blue Star communities, is taking a leadership role in protecting Minnesota's water resources and public health through excellence in stormwater management.

Read more »


Phase III of the restoration at Hastings Sand Coulee Scientific and Natural Area (SNA) has begun. This comprises of brush removal, buckthorn resprout control, and seeding within eighty acres of grassland, cropland, and degraded oak woodland in the northwest corner of the SNA. The woodlands are truly being transformed, it's amazing to see!

Read more »

Mississippi River News

As the 2014 Mississippi River floodwaters recede and Minnesotans take stock of the damages, one irreplaceable piece of history appears to have been lost. The Grey Cloud Lime Kiln, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, collapsed last month, apparently due to floodwaters eroding its foundation.

Read the story in the Star Tribune and check out this short video about the Lime Kiln.


The federal Clean Water Act is in the process of being updated. Currently, it contains a vague definition of "Waters of the U.S.". This vague definition has been used to limit protections for many of our nation's waters. Updating the Clean Water Act to clarify this definition will help protect streams and wetlands that feed and improve the water quality of the Mississippi River. More information about taking action through FMR will be available in the September Mississippi Messages email.

Read more »


Recent flooding has drawn attention to Minnesota's water quality issues, especially the impact of agricultural pollution on our rivers and lakes. A recent column by Star Tribune outdoors columnist Dennis Anderson laments the enormous price Minnesotans are paying for unsustainable agricultural policies. The column notes that agricultural tile lines are exempt from the federal Clean Water Act , excessive fertilizer application is encouraged, Minnesota's rule requiring 50 foot vegetated buffers on all streams and rivers in agricultural areas is rarely enforced, and Minnesota's law against planting corn and soybeans in public roadsides is not enforced. With all of these things stacked against clean water, Anderson points out that "Chances are slim, no matter how educated people are or how hard they work, that they'll ever enjoy the same quality of American natural resources their parents did, or their parents before them and those born earlier still."

Read more »


About 189 releases of untreated sewage occurred in Minnesota during our June rains. Most of the overflows happened in outstate Minnesota with 26 happening in the metro area. Sewage overflows almost always outlet to our rivers and lakes, posing a risk to human health. Stormwater officials stress the importance of separate stormwater and wastewater systems as well as continual maintenance and improvement of wastewater systems to minimize entrance of non-wastewater into the system.

For more information, read Bill McAuliffe's Star Tribune article. See also the Star Tribune's July 3rd editorial on the subject.


Chemicals are spreading in Minnesota groundwater according to a recent statewide survey of chemical contamination in Minnesota's groundwater. The chemicals come from a variety of consumer and industrial products including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, lotions, detergents, plastic-making ingredients and more. Minnesota Public Radio reports, "In what may be the nation's most extensive study of its kind, a survey of 118 test wells scattered around Minnesota has found that about a third of them contain measurable levels of antibiotics, detergents, or other consumer chemicals..."

Read more »


St. Paul's Indian Mounds Park, with its awe inspiring views of the Mississippi River, has been added to the National Register of Historic places. The burial mounds, which are more than 2000 years old are the last remaining intact mounds in the Twin Cities area. Read more in the Star Tribune.

For further reading here's a more detailed "Short History of Indian Mounds Park."

Calendar of Events

Saturday, August 9, -- 9-10:30 a.m.
Indian Mounds Park, Blufftop, St. Paul

Known for its stunning vantage point, Indian Mounds Park is a Twin Cities river icon. Join towboat pilot and FMR boardmember Hokan Miller and environmental scientist Mike Nevala to learn about its grand history -- from powerful geologic forces to American Indian burial mounds, the historic harbor and today's busy working river, and the exciting community and FMR-led restoration of the blufftop prairie.

Capacity is limited and preregistration required. Learn more on the event page, or sign up now with Janna at jknittel@fmr.org or 651-222-2193 x31.


Thursday, September 18, 6-7:30 p.m.
Cottage Grove Ravine Regional Park, Cottage Grove

Join Friends of the Mississippi River ecologist Karen Schik and Washington Conservation District's Angie Hong as we explore Ravine Lake and the wetlands surrounding it. You'll learn about the plant life in and around the wetlands -- aquatic, amphibious, and terrestrial -- and the important role these plants play as they provide habitat and filter pollutants from our waters. Then we'll use dip nets to get a closer look at macroinvertebrates living in the marsh, and discuss what these tiny creatures reveal about the impacts of water pollution!

Capacity is limited and preregistration required. Children are welcome with a parent or guardian. Learn more on the event page, or sign up now with Janna at jknittel@fmr.org or 651-222-2193 x31.


Thursday, September 25, 6-7:30 p.m.
Lakeville Area Arts Center, Lakeville

Every time there's a heavy rain, rainwater has washed over your roof, your yard and pavement -- carrying bits of roof shingles, pet waste, fertilizer, pesticides, motor oil and dirt into the nearest storm drain. All of this pollution goes right into our local creeks, lakes and the Vermillion and Mississippi Rivers -- unfiltered, untreated! Rain barrels help reduce this runoff pollution, and offer many other benefits as well. Learn more, sign up and purchase your barrel and supplies ($30) via the event page.


Saturday, mid- to late-August, plus 30 additional hours
Rice Creek Watershed District, NE Metro

Stream Health Evaluation Program (SHEP) volunteers are everyday citizens who live or work in the Rice Creek Watershed District trained to meet professional-grade stream health testing standards. After the august field training, in August, SHEP volunteers conduct testing and data analysis in the stream and the laboratory throughout September and October. Volunteers work in small teams and put in an average of 40 hours between training, sampling, and data analysis. The program is led by scientists from the Rice Creek Watershed District and Fortin Consulting, with training and laboratory sessions held at the Wargo Nature Center in Lino Lakes.Wargo Nature Center, Lino Lakes, participants must live in Rice Creek Watershed. Learn more from the calendar listing!


Through mid-October
City of Saint Paul

If you're looking for a great service outing that is educational, active, outdoors and provides a significant community benefit, consider storm drain stenciling. It's just one and a half to three hours in length, and can be set at a time and St. Paul location convenient for your group. Reservations are now being taken for outings through October 2014. Learn more on the stenciling event page or go straight to our stenciling, cleanup and presentation request form!


Mid to late summer is the time that we begin to see more and more pollinators, especially bumblebees.

Read more »

Supporting FMR

Thank you to everyone who is already a member or supporter! FMR could not be doing all of the work we talk about here in the Mississippi Messages without you!

If you are not yet a member, or haven't made a gift to FMR in a while, now is a great time to join or renew your support. The Pohlad Foundation has offered FMR a $10,000 challenge grant to match new gifts before October 27, and we are currently about halfway to that goal. To help us earn the full challenge and strengthen the community voice for the river, please consider a tax-deductible gift to Friends of the Mississippi River today. You can call Heather at 651-222-2193 x20 to make a gift by phone, mail in a check, or make your gift right now online. Thank you for your support!

Quote of the Month

"Come forth into the light of things,
Let Nature be your Teacher."

- William Wordsworth

The Science Museum of Minnesota and two Twin Cities-area libraries are looking for energetic individuals to join our team. If you love learning, work well as part of a team, & thrive when interacting with and educating others, you can become part of our fun learning environment!

Description of Position:
Kids of all ages can bring in a natural object (or a journal entry, photograph, rubbings or drawings of that object) and share their knowledge about the item with Collectors' Corner volunteers. The more a trader knows about the object, the more points they will earn. With the points earned, the trader may trade for another item. Volunteers interact with children and families to introduce and facilitate the trading process and enter information into the Collectors' Corner database.

There are openings for volunteers at Rice Street Library in St. Paul and R.H.Stafford Library in Woodbury. Both sites are also connected with Collectors' Corner at the Science Museum of Minnesota.

Basic Requirements -
• At least 16 years of age
• Able to volunteer for a biweekly 4-hour shift for at least 6 months (Tuesday or Wednesday early evenings or Saturdays)
• Available to take all required trainings and are open to feedback
• Have effective communication skills
• Enjoy interacting with people of all ages
• Enjoy nature and talking about the natural world
• Comfortable with computer and data entry

How to become a Collectors' Corner Neighborhood Trading Place Volunteer:
Apply online at: www.smm.org/volunteer/application

Questions: contact: Maija Sedzielarz, Project Lead. maija@smm.org, 651-221-4454; smm.org/tradingplaces

Volunteer Benefits
• Positively impact your community by helping individuals learn
• Share your love of nature and strategies for learning about nature in our surroundings
• Be part of a library's science resources!
• Gain experience and valuable skills for college & job applications
• Be a part of an environment of fun, curiosity and lifelong-learning
• Receive complimentary tickets to Science Museum exhibits & Omnitheater, attend enrichment workshops and learning opportunities and enjoy discounts to the Explore Store, food areas, and other museums' admission.

Aug 2 Bog BioBlitz II Meadowlands, MN

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Find more information on this event here.

Restoring MN Ecological Restoration Online Courses

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Ecological restoration is increasingly relied on as a conservation strategy in Minnesota. In order to increase project success rates, the Ecological Restoration Training Cooperative has developed five online restoration courses that teach practical in-field applications, as well as the theory behind the practice, for specific aspects of restoration.

Who Should Participate
With a goal of promoting best practices in ecological restoration, this training series is targeted at early career professionals, but even well-seasoned practitioners will benefit from the depth of the content.

Susan M. Galatowitsch, professor/head, Department of Fisheries, Wildlife
& Conservation Biology, University of Minnesota
Julia Bohnen, research fellow, Department of Fisheries, Wildlife &
Conservation Biology, University of Minnesota

Two sessions scheduled.
August 25-September 28, 2014
January 5-February 8, 2015
This required introductory course will simulate the initial steps of planning a restoration project from gathering background information to collecting relevant data, and then use the information gathered to formulate restoration goals. This course covers how to assess the ecological condition of degraded sites, diagnose the restoration needs of a site prior to restoration, and plan meaningful project goals. This course is a prerequisite to each of the other four courses.

Two sessions scheduled.
September 29-November 9, 2014
February 9-March 22, 2015
Many ecological restoration projects rely on re-vegetation from seed. This course discusses successful steps for designing and implementing a seed mix, from choosing appropriate species to preparing the planting site. This course covers how to: assess the need to seed, use seed biology to make practical decisions about seeding projects,
design seed mixes, acquire and store seeds, prepare sites and seeds for sowing, seed a
restoration site, and manage a site after sowing to promote vegetation establishment. *Field Training Session included.

Two sessions scheduled.
September 29-November 9, 2014
February 9-March 22, 2015
Monitoring is necessary for evaluating the effectiveness of restoration actions. Learn how to design an efficient and effective monitoring program that yields information helpful for ongoing restoration management decisions and problem solving. This course covers how to select monitoring parameters, develop monitoring protocols, monitor
implementation and quality control, summarize and visualize data, analyze data, and keep records

Two sessions scheduled.
November 10-December 21, 2014
March 23-May 3, 2015
Ecological restorations of small sites often rely primarily on installing plants to restore the desired native vegetation. Even large sites, which are typically seeded, may be supplemented with plantings. This course covers how to assess the need to plant, design a planting and select species, choose planting stock, create a planting plan, prepare to plant, plant a restoration site, and manage a planting.

Two sessions scheduled.
November 10-December 21, 2014
March 23-May 3, 2015
Restored and degraded ecosystems may take many years to recover. During that time, they need ongoing management. Techniques used in two broad categories of management strategies for restorations: re-establishing natural disturbances
and controlling invasive species will be presented. This course covers: disturbances and introduced species as management priorities, non-chemical management techniques, vegetation management with herbicides, and long-term management of prairies, forests, and wetlands. *Field Training Session included

Field Training Sessions
Participants who successfully complete the Designing and Using Native Seed Mixes and
Vegetation Management for Restored Ecosystems online courses have the opportunity to join staff from the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Division of Parks and Trails to participate in an all-day field training session. During the field session, participants will tap into the experiences of DNR Parks and Trails Area and Regional Resource Specialist staff to gain new skills in a hands-on environment.
More information is available at www.restoringminnesota.umn.edu.

Time Commitment
It takes most students 25-30 hours to complete each course. All requirements must be completed by the last day of the course period to receive continuing education credit.

Course Deadlines and Final Exam
The course includes recommended deadlines for submitting assignments and a final exam. If you submit your assignments and exam by the recommended deadline, you'll know which questions you didn't answer correctly in time to try again.

Professional Credit
Each course has been approved for 3.0 Continuing Education Credits (CEUs) and 30 Professional Development Hours (PDHs). A CEU certificate will be sent to each participant after the course is passed and completed. The University of Minnesota maintains a permanent record of CEUs earned.

Registration and Fees
Your registration includes access to the course within the course dates and a CEU certificate upon passing and completion of the course. The fee for each course is $375.

How to Register
Online registration is available on the website at www.restoringminnesota.umn.edu.

For Further Information
Zack McGough
University of Minnesota

Online Training
For those of you who avoid online courses because they don't seem like a great way to learn - give these a try! These online courses have been designed to be interactive and as "real world" as possible. This means you'll be able to visit warm, sunny field sites even when it is 20 degrees below. How bad can that be? All courses will be delivered online and each course will have a specific start and end date.

Volunteer at the SMM's Butterfly House!

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Volunteer at the SMM's Butterfly House!
If you like to help people learn and have fun, want to positively impact your community, and have interests and/or experience in customer service or education, we want you to join our wonderful volunteer community! The Science Museum of Minnesota is looking for volunteers for our Butterfly House. 2 volunteer roles are available;

Volunteer Greeter
Positively shape each visitor's experience by assisting them as they enter and exit the museum's special exhibit-The Butterfly House, sharing in their excitement to see the Live Butterfly House and answering their questions. Be a smiling face visitors see, a hub for information, and a guide for exploration and fun.

Volunteer Interpreter
Interpreter Volunteers in the Live Butterfly House will learn a basic understanding of butterfly life cycle, biology and identification that they can use to engage and interact with visitors. Volunteers will help visitors feed butterflies as well as learn activities that will help visitors better understand butterflies though observation. Volunteers should be comfortable with live butterflies and with the expected warmer and more humid temperature inside the Live Butterfly House.

The Butterfly House will open Friday, October 3rd.
New Volunteer Orientation is Tuesday,September 16th from 6-830pm.
Training dates TBD.

Apply online at: www.smm.org/volunteer/application

Contact SMM Volunteer Department with questions at 651-221-9453 or volunteer@smm.org
thank you!

For more information on each position:

Butterfly House Interpreter.pdf

SPEX Greeter Flyer.pdf

The new fiscal year is here, so now is a perfect time to register for the Midwest Partners in Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Meeting (MW PARC) that will be held August 22 - 24th (the majority of presentations are on Saturday). This year's meeting theme is, "Survey and Monitoring of Amphibians and Reptiles with an Emphasis on Restored Habitats." Attached is a flyer with additional information.

Aug 13 Ash Inventory Event

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Ash Inventory Session
Consider joining us for an Ash Inventory session and volunteer event that will allow participant volunteers to use mobile tablet computers to collect ash inventory data in the Twin Cities. This data will inform a Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) research study related to emerald ash borer (EAB). This event will start at 9 AM at Langford Park: 30 Langford Park, Saint Paul, MN 55108 (44.976294 -93.194996). We expect participants will be done by 3:30. We will demonstrate how to use the tablet computers to collect ash inventory data; how to do the ash inventory and what EAB looks like. Then participants will break-up into pairs or small groups to conduct the inventory. There is no registration fee and lunch is provided. Preregistration is required. Please register here. Registration is limited to 20 people. Register early.

Aug. 2 Prairie Day at Chippewa Prairie

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On August 2, starting at 9 am anybody interested in the prairie and prairie management is welcome to come and learn about the Chippewa Prairie south of Appleton. Tall grass prairie is one of the most endangered ecosystems in the world. Currently, less than 1/10 of 1% of tall grass prairie remains within its historic range. In MN, less than 2% remains across its original range. Chippewa Prairie is some of the best and highest quality prairie remaining in MN and managers are doing everything we can to ensure we are managing the site for all species that require prairie to survive and thrive in today's changing environments. Chippewa Prairie is jointly managed by The Nature Conservancy and the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and we are working together on an intensive and ongoing study at the property of the effects of patch burn grazing. Patch burn grazing is being used as a conservation grazing practice that mimics the historic natural disturbances of fire and grazing in an effort to increase vegetation structure across the site.

We will spend time walking the prairie looking at plants, birds, research projects, and discussing the fascinating aspects of the grassland systems. This is an excellent time and opportunity to learn about all the research, monitoring, and conservation that is occurring in your area. Some of the topics that will be covered will be: fire, plant response to fire, 20 year plant monitoring project, birds, butterflies, snakes, cattle research, wetland research, short and long term management objectives, questions, and discussions with participants.

When: Saturday August 2

Start: 9 AM

Where: The day will begin at the MN DNR and TNC parking lot located 1 mile west of the intersection of County Rd 30 and Chippewa/Swift County line.

What to bring: Please come prepared to walk the prairie. Recommended items to bring would be: sunscreen, field guides, mosquito spray, hat, and binoculars. A picnic lunch will be provided.

Contact: Please RSVP Joe Blastick at (605) 874-8517 or jblastick@tnc.org.


We have a fun Invasive Species Room planned for this year at the DNR Building at the State Fair. People will experience a day of recreation and the actions they can take to prevent the spread of invasive species. They will start out along a trail display, then move to a campsite area, and then go to a boat launch. The famous zebra mussel-encrusted shopping cart will also be on exhibit.

We need your help to staff the Invasive Species Room. Please consider signing up to help staff the room. There are several positions you could help with:

General Invasive Species - State Fair Invasive Species Room
Duties include welcoming people to the invasive species room, directing them on what they can do there, answering questions about invasive species (or directing them to people who can), and assisting where necessary. Your background may be in either terrestrial or aquatic invasive species. There will be other experts present who can help answer questions you may not be able to.

Terrestrial Invasive Species - State Fair Invasive Species Room
This position is located in the camping area of the State Fair Invasive Species Room. Responsibilities include directing people to search the campsite for invasive species, encouraging people to pose for pictures they take themselves, and sharing information about terrestrial invasive species prevention.

Emerald Ash Borer Costume
You will wear the Emerald Ash Borer costume and walk the DNR Grounds at noon and 2:00 pm. The time in your shift includes time for getting dressed and taking a break in the middle of your shift. See this website for photos of the costume: http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/volunteering/statefair.html

Aquatic Invasive Species - State Fair Invasive Species Room
Duties include staffing the boating area in the Invasive Species Room and talking to visitors about inspecting boats for invasive species, and sharing information about invasive species.

Once you know what position you are interested in, simply click on the doodle poll link below to sign up for an available shift. You will be asked to provide your contact information so we can provide you with more information and mail you your ticket(s).

Type of job and Doodle poll link
Aquatic Invasive Species
Terrestrial Invasive Species
General Invasives (Aquatic or Terrestrial Invasives background)
Emerald Ash borer costume

Thank you! Please contact me if you have any questions. Please share with others who may be interested.

Laura Van Riper
Terrestrial Invasive Species Coordinator
Division of Ecological and Water Resources
Minnesota Department of Natural Resources
500 Lafayette Road, Box 25
St. Paul MN 55155-4025

July Mississippi Messages

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Wednesday, August 6 -- 6-7:30 p.m.
Flat Earth Brewery, Historic Hamm's Building, East Side St. Paul

Join us at Flat Earth brewery to learn what you can do inside your home to improve the health of your local waters, then enjoy a brewery tour and samples. Capacity is limited and preregistration required. Learn more on the event page, or sign up now with Janna at jknittel@fmr.org or 651-222-2193 x31.

Read more »


Saturday, August 9, -- 9-10:30 a.m.
Indian Mounds Park, Blufftop, St. Paul

Known for its stunning vantage point, Indian Mounds Park is a Twin Cities river icon. Join towboat pilot and FMR boardmember Hokan Miller and environmental scientist Mike Nevala to learn about its grand history -- from powerful geologic forces to American Indian burial mounds, the historic harbor and today's busy working river, and the exciting community and FMR-led restoration of the blufftop prairie.

Capacity is limited and preregistration required. Learn more on the event page, or sign up now with Janna at jknittel@fmr.org or 651-222-2193 x31.

Read more »


Thursday, September 18, 6-7:30 p.m.
Cottage Grove Ravine Regional Park, Cottage Grove

Join Friends of the Mississippi River ecologist Karen Schik and Washington Conservation District's Angie Hong as we explore Ravine Lake and the wetlands surrounding it. You'll learn about the plant life in and around the wetlands -- aquatic, amphibious, and terrestrial -- and the important role these plants play as they provide habitat and filter pollutants from our waters. Then we'll use dip nets to get a closer look at macroinvertebrates living in the marsh, and discuss what these tiny creatures reveal about the impacts of water pollution!

Capacity is limited and preregistration required. Children are welcome with a parent or guardian. Learn more on the event page, or sign up now with Janna at jknittel@fmr.org or 651-222-2193 x31.

Read more »


Thursday, September 25, 6-7:30 p.m.
Lakeville Area Arts Center, Lakeville

Every time there's a heavy rain, rainwater has washed over your roof, your yard and pavement -- carrying bits of roof shingles, pet waste, fertilizer, pesticides, motor oil and dirt into the nearest storm drain. All of this pollution goes right into our local creeks, lakes and the Vermillion and Mississippi Rivers -- unfiltered, untreated! Rain barrels help reduce this runoff pollution, and offer many other benefits as well. Learn more, sign up and purchase your barrel and supplies ($30) via the event page.

Read more »


Saturday, mid- to late-August, plus 30 additional hours
Rice Creek Watershed District, NE Metro

Stream Health Evaluation Program (SHEP) volunteers are everyday citizens who live or work in the Rice Creek Watershed District trained to meet professional-grade stream health testing standards. After the august field training, in August, SHEP volunteers conduct testing and data analysis in the stream and the laboratory throughout September and October. Volunteers work in small teams and put in an average of 40 hours between training, sampling, and data analysis. The program is led by scientists from the Rice Creek Watershed District and Fortin Consulting, with training and laboratory sessions held at the Wargo Nature Center in Lino Lakes.Wargo Nature Center, Lino Lakes, participants must live in Rice Creek Watershed. Learn more from the calendar listing!

Read more »


Through mid-October
City of Saint Paul

If you're looking for a great service outing that is educational, active, outdoors and provides a significant community benefit, consider storm drain stenciling. It's just one and a half to three hours in length, and can be set at a time and St. Paul location convenient for your group. Reservations are now being taken for outings through October 2014. Learn more on the stenciling event page or go straight to our stenciling, cleanup and presentation request form!

Read more »

For current event listings and more information on the events listed above, please visit our events calendar page at www.fmr.org/participate/events.

Aug 23 Guided Walk at Iron Horse Prairie SNA

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Iron Horse Prairie SNA
Saturday, August 23 at 10:30 am
Dodge County

Join us for a two hour walk through one of the few remaining mesic tallgrass prairie remnants in eastern Minnesota. This 35 acre prairie is located between two railroad spurs that inadvertently provided protection from the plow. This prairie offers a high level of species diversity with the late summer showcasing big bluestem, Indian grass, prairie cordgrass, and bluejoint along with forbs such as wild quinine, blazing stars, and sunflowers. Bring your cameras, field guides, sketch book, and binoculars to capture the many species that comprise this tall grass prairie.

Visit http://www.mndnr.gov/snas/sna01018 for more information on Iron Horse Prairie SNA.

Footwear appropriate for hiking is recommended. There are no maintained trails. This easy walk will be 1.5 to 2 miles in length on uneven terrain. There are neither public restrooms nor access to drinking water on this site. Bring a hat, sunscreen and water.

From Hayfield 1 mile South on MN Hwy 56, then 0.5 miles E on 740th Street. Park in lot on S, at old railroad grade. Hike will begin here.

For more information contact Veronika Phillips at 952-454-8428 or vphillips.habitat@gmail.com

For more information on SNAs, visit www.mndnr.gov/snas

Aug 3 Guided Walk at Prairie Bush Clover SNA

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Prairie Bush Clover SNA
Sunday, August 3 at 9:30am
Jackson County

Join us for a two hour guided walk that will provide an opportunity to experience a dry hill prairie that is unique for supporting one of the world's largest populations of its namesake, the rare prairie bush clover. Observe the species that comprise a groundwater seepage meadow that lies along an intermittent stream. Bring your
cameras, field guides, sketch book, and binoculars to capture the purple coneflower, blazing stars, and sunflowers that this August prairie landscape offers.

Visit http://www.mndnr.gov/snas/sna01036 for more information on Prairie Bush Clover SNA.

Footwear appropriate for hiking is recommended. Hiking will be moderate in difficulty and approximately 0.5 to 1 mile in distance on uneven and hilly terrain. There is a maintained state park trail for those who would like to observe from the trail. Bring a hat, sunscreen and water. Restrooms are available in the park.

From Windom 8.5 miles South on Co Hwy 17, then 1.5 miles East on Co Hwy 24 into Kilen Woods State Park. Park in lot near office where hike begins.

For more information contact Veronika Phillips at 952-454-8428 or vphillips.habitat@gmail.com.

For more information on SNAs, visit www.mndnr.gov/snas

Aug 2 Guided Walk at Glynn Prairie SNA

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Glynn Prairie SNA
Saturday, August 2 at 10:00am
Lyon County

This two hour walk will offer an opportunity to experience a rare mesic prairie plant community that offers a glimpse of landscapes past. This fall prairie will showcase blazing star, gayfeather, and purple coneflower interspersed among the prairie cordgrass, Indian grass, and big bluestem. Bring your cameras, field guides, sketch book, and binoculars to capture this special landscape.

Visit http://www.mndnr.gov/snas/sna01103 for more information on Glynn Prairie SNA.

Footwear appropriate for hiking is recommended. There are no maintained trails and the
approximately 1 mile hike will be on uneven, but flat terrain. Bring a hat, sunscreen and water. There are neither public restrooms nor access to drinking water on this site.

From Tracy 3.5 miles West on US Hwy 14, then 1.75 miles North on Co Hwy 9. Park in pull-off on West. We will begin walk here.

For more information contact Veronika Phillips at 952-454-8428 or vphillips.habitat@gmail.com.

For more information on SNAs, visit www.mndnr.gov/snas

Aug 16 Prairie Photography Workshop

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Joseph A. Tauer Prairie
Scientific & Natural Area

View the prairie through the lens of your camera. During this 2-hour exploration of Joseph
A. Tauer Prairie you will learn simple techniques to capture the beauty of the prairie. Join
Dale Bohlke, SNA volunteer and photographer, as he shares his passion for the prairie and
knowledge of photography.

Date: Saturday, August 16th, 2014
Time: 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Location: From New Ulm, 8 miles south on County Road 13, then 2 miles
west on County Road 22, then 0.25 mile north on 180th Street. Park on east
road shoulder.

Website and map: http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/snas/detail.html?id=sna01056
Questions: Brad Bolduan at 507-831-2900 x 241

July Headwaters Science Center News

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Storm Chasers!
What makes a storm? How do meteorologists know when it's going to rain? What happens in the atmosphere on a sunny day?

If you've ever asked these questions, then Storm Chasers is the camp for you! This summer HSC and Bemidji State University are joining forces for an awesome camp - STORM CHASERS! Launch a high altitude balloon carrying a payload you and your team designed. Observe and make weather predictions. Learn about weather on other planets.

Storm Chasers is for students entering 7th-9th grades and will be held at BSU July 28 to August 1st from 10am to 4pm. The cost is $200 for the week and scholarships are available. All the details here.

This camp is made possible in part by a grant from the NASA Space Grant

Preparing to launch a weather balloon
Spend $10 - Win $1,000

HSC raffle tickets are on sale now through August 30th at 11:59am. Tickets are $10 each and you could win $1,000 (1st prize), a new Current Designs Kayak (2nd prize) or a Weber Charcoal Grill with tools (3rd prize).

Buy your tickets at HSC or from any HSC board member - don't wait, only 500 tickets will be sold.

MN Lawful Gambling Exempt Permit X-03830-14-003
Must be 18 or older to purchase a ticket or win a prize
Winner responsible for all fees and taxes
Need not be present to win

Saturday Science - Fruit Ripening

Join us from 2-3pm on Saturday, July 19th for a special presentation on the science behind ripening fruit!

Preschool Sunshine Club (Ages 3-5 with adult)
THURSDAYS, AUGUST 7, 14 AND 21; 10:00AM - 11:15AM

Learn about a favorite animal each week with stories, crafts and hikes. Bring a white tee shirt the first session and we'll print a "Sunshine Shirt" to wear each week. Meet a live frog, salamander and snake. Register online by August 6, 13 or 20. Cost is $15.00 per child for the series or $5.00 per session.

To register for the Nature Center programs please click

July-Aug National Phenology Network Newsletter

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What's new at Nature's Notebook and USA-NPN

New Nature's Notebook materials for your use

You can now find short summaries of recent, high-impact publications to help you stay abreast of advances in the field of phenology on the USA-NPN Highlighted Publications tool. These summaries are intended for sharing - hopefully you'll find them useful to share with your participants, members, or friends.

View the Tool >>

Recent webinar summarized in 1-pager

Some key results from the "Summary of Spring" webinar are summarized in a one-page document, designed for you to share. And if you missed the webinar, you can view the recording anytime.

Next Nature's Notebook webinar: What came first, the flower or the bee? Learn to explore patterns in space and time using the Data Visualization Tool. Learn how to see where people are observing, map species, animate their phenology, and overlay climate data, as well as graph and share your findings.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014: 11am Pacific (& AZ), 12pm Mountain, 1pm Central, 2pm Eastern

Register for the July 8 webinar >>

Nature's Notebook featured in a future episode of SciGirls!

Next spring, the PBS Kids show, SciGirls, will air a series of six episodes featuring a wide range of citizen science programs. One of these will be Nature's Notebook! This past spring, three sixth-grade girls in St. Paul, MN tracked spring phenology of three plant species and compared these data with observations in previous years.

As the air date for the episode draws near, we'll be sure to let you know!

Recent happenings in the field of phenology

Short video answers, "why track phenology?"

Can a status update from a flower tell us something about climate change? Researchers at UC Santa Barbara explain how studying the life-cycle of plants can give us a wealth of information about climate.

Watch Video »

Especially for Local Phenology Leaders

Phenology Days: Sep 28 - Oct 4

We are gearing up to celebrate the lovely topic of phenology this autumn through a "Phenology Days" event during the week of Sep 28 - Oct 4. Here in Tucson, this will include events held at all of the Tucson Phenology Trail sites and a keynote event and picnic on Saturday, Oct 4. Want to host something similar in your region? It is a great way to engage people in phenology and observing in Nature's Notebook. If you do choose to host an event, let us know on the listserv, we'll help you to promote it!

Have you joined the Local Phenology Leaders listserv?

The Local Phenology Leaders Listserv is a great way to connect up with other individuals that coordinate a group of people in tracking phenology. If you're not yet receiving these messages, join by sending an email to list@list.arizona.edu with the words "Subscribe local-phenology-leaders YourFirstName YourLastName" in the subject line. Be sure to DELETE any text in the body of the message, including signature lines. You will then receive a welcome message from the listserv. If you have trouble, email education@usanpn.org and we will subscribe you manually.

More ways to get involved

Upcoming meetings
2014 Ecological Society of America Annual Meeting. Sacramento, CA, Aug 10-15, 2014. USA-NPN will have a booth there - come say Hi!

Exploring Public Participation in Scientific Research (PPSR) Under a Western Sky. Hosted by the Miistakis Institute at Mount Royal University in Calgary, Alberta, Sep 9-10, 2014

Citizen Science 2015 Conference. Hosted by the Citizen Science Association, San Jose, CA, Feb 11-12, 2015

American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting. San Fransisco, CA, Dec 15-19, 2014. Consider submitting an abstract for session #2576, ""Long-range forecasts of seasonal transitions in the climate system and their relevance for management and adaptation", to be held within the Global Environmental Change Section/Focus Group (co-sponsored by Biogeosciences).


Theresa Crimmins
Partnerships & Outreach Coordinator

LoriAnne Barnett
Education Coordinator

July Maplewood Parks & Rec Newsletter

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You can view the latest news on Wellness, Arts, and Fun for Everyone at Maplewood Parks and Recreation here.

My name is Anna Dutke and I am planning a Field and Leadership Day for Prior Lake Savage Area School youth who are student leaders in environmental awareness and sustainability practices. The students come together with leaders from the other schools to get to know one another as well as learn about some key information and skills that they can take back to their classrooms and share with their peers. I am anticipating approximately 225 students ranging in age from 3rd grade through 12th grade. Students will be grouped by age, so your sessions will have either 3rd-5th graders or a combination of middle school and high schoolers. There will be no more than 20 students per session.

I am looking for volunteers who are willing to teach sessions about topics of their choice. The day will be held at McColl Pond ELC in Savage which boasts a big woods forest, native prairie, and wetlands and pond with decks for close observation. There is a potential for teaching a total of 6 classes (the Elementary Session #1 and Middle and High School Session #3 cross with one another.).

The 2014 Field and Leadership Day is scheduled for Monday, October 6th from 8am-2:30pm. The following is a tentative schedule for the day:

8:30am-9:20am Middle and High School Session #1
9:25am-10:15am Middle and High School Session #2
10:20am-11:10am Middle and High School Session #3/Elementary Session #1
11:15-12:00pm Elementary Session #2
12:05-12:25pm Lunch
12:30pm-1:15pm Elementary Session #3
1:20pm-2:05pm Elementary Session #4

Example topics that we have had volunteers teach in the past, and are looking to incorporate again this year include Aquatic Life, Insects, Prairie Ecology, Art of Observation, Tree Identification, Nature Journaling etc. We're open to new ideas, so if there is something you are interested in teaching about, let me know!

Should you have any questions or need more details please email or call me at 651-249-3742. If you get an "out of the office" response from my email, no worries as I am checking it regularly during the summer while working on some projects.

Thank you so much for considering and I'll look forward to hearing back from you.


Anna Dutke
Early Childhood Teacher
Grainwood Elementary Junior Naturalist Advisor
Prior Lake, MN 55372

July Northland Arboretum Newsletter

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Check out the newest events at the Northland Arb here.

Happy Summer from Outdoor U!

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St. John's Outdoor U Tap Takeover
Saturday, July 19
4:00-8:00 p.m.
100% of tap proceeds benefit Outdoor U

More information can be found here.

Ecology and the Old Testament
a summer class at the Saint John's School of Theology
July 7-25 (MTWTh July 7-10 and MTThF July14-25)

What is the relationship between human beings and nature? This question is at least as old as the Epic of Gilgamesh, and it runs throughout the Old Testament in a fascinating variety of ways. In this course we will engage deeply with ancient texts and consider what an Old Testament theology of creation might mean for contemporary times. In our age of environmental crises, the Old Testament can provide a restorative vision of right and ordered relations between humans, nature, and God.

Samuel Thomas, PhD
Associate Professor of Religion, California Lutheran University

3 graduate credits available--or auditors welcome--auditors will attend lectures and try to do reading, but do not have to write papers or take exams.

Cost for CREDIT = $1125 ($375/credit)
Cost for AUDIT = $825 ($275 per credit)

Register online. Use the NEW STUDENT REGISTRATION link.

Apply Now!
Abbey Arboretum Archery
Deer Hunt
October 18 - December 31, 204
(except Oct 24-25)
Applications due Aug. 11 by 4 p.m. Details about the hunt, the lottery selection process, and FAQs are on our website.

July 1 Rivervoice Newsletter

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Simon Lake BioBlitz 2014

A Co-Sponsored Action Opportunity: Simon Lake BioBlitz with LSP. By systematically surveying the grasslands in the area, this BioBlitz will provide a "before" image of the state of the ecosystem, develop some data, and connect a larger community of prairie neighbors, including the birds, bats, plants, frogs, insects, and larger mammals.

Contact the Land Stewardship Project's Robin Moore at 320-269-2105 or rmoore@landstewardshipproject.org if you are interested in volunteering. You can also sign up as a volunteer here. Our goal is to have 100+ people come out for this event, so bring a friend and/or your entire family!

The Land Stewardship Project, the Chippewa River Watershed Project and Clean Up the River Environment are co-sponsoring this event.

Explore a Prairie Watershed:
Photography and Paddling at Glacial Lakes State Park

On Sunday, July 13, two Master Naturalists and CURE RiverKeepers will be collaborating to bring you a day of awesome outdoor learning at Glacial Lakes State Park. In the morning, area photographer John G. White will share advice on capturing the beauty of the prairie through digital photography on a hike co-led with this year's RiverKeeper Kylene Olson. The hike will take you through Glacial Lakes State Park, a unique and beautiful area with one of the very few remaining stretches of Minnesota's native prairie.

In the afternoon, Kylene and John will lead a paddle on Signalness Lake, an amazing 56 acres of clear, clean waters-a testament to the natural state of the lake's watershed, all of which is contained within the park.

Please register for the morning photography hike and afternoon paddle separately, and plan to bring a bagged lunch if you want to participate in both. Also, you may want to consider camping at Glacial Lakes on Saturday evening so that you can attend one of the public "star parties" hosted (almost) every Saturday night by the Glacial Lakes Astronomers and Stargazers Society. Then, you can sleep in and wake yourself up with a pleasant morning walk!

Click here to register for the photography hike.
Click here to register for the afternoon paddle.

Event Details
Who: RiverKeepers and Master Naturalists
Kylene Olson & John G. White
What: Hike & Paddle
Outdoor Fun and Learning
When: Sunday, July 13
Photography at 10:00 am - 12:30 pm
Paddling at 1:30 pm - 4 pm
Where: Glacial Lakes State Park
25022 County Road 41
Starbuck, Mn 56381
Once you register, we will tell you where to meet.
Why: To learn some tips on taking stunning nature photographs
To see how clean water can be when the watershed is ecologically sound
Cost: Both events are FREE for CURE Members
Photography is $10 for non-members ($15/family)
Paddle is $10 for non-members ($15/family)
You may become a member or renew your membership at the event.

A Dakota Perspective on the Minnesota River

CURE Board member Don Robertson will be leading a paddle on the Minnesota River on Saturday, July 26. The exact location will be determined the week before the paddle to accomodate changing water levels, but regardless, this trip will give you an opportunity to explore the river that inspired CURE's founding 22 years ago. Furthermore, Don is an enrolled member of the Sisseton Oyate, and he will be sharing stories about the importance of Minnesota River to the Dakota people.

This trip will be appropriate for people with basic to intermediate paddling ability, though plan to be on the river from 9:00 am until lunchtime. Also, please bring your own bagged lunch and water, and dress for the weather in light, layered clothes, a hat, and sunglasses. Don't forget your sunscreen!

Who: CURE Board Member Don Robertson
What: Paddling Fun
Cultural Learning
When: Saturday, July 26
9:00 am - 1:00 pm
Where: Upper Minnesota River
Exact Location to be determined the week before
Why: To explore the Minnesota River
To learn about the importance of the river to the Dakota people
Cost: FREE for CURE members
$15 for non-CURE members

May/June River Rendezvous Newsletter

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River Rendezvous
Promoting watershed education and awareness in the Red River Basin

View the newsletter here.

July 1 SEEK Bulletin

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You can find the July 1 SEEK Bulletin here.

Zebra mussels confirmed in Lake Melissa in Becker County

Zebra mussels have been confirmed in Lake Melissa, located southwest of Detroit Lakes in Becker County, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.

A citizen discovered the zebra mussels earlier in the week while collecting shells on the south end of the lake, near the outlet structure.

"This is the first confirmed zebra mussel find in the Detroit Lakes area," said Barry Stratton, DNR Ecological and Water Resources Division, southern district manager. "We're extremely pleased that this discovery was reported so quickly and with such detail. The report included specific location information and photos that allowed us to respond immediately to the exact spot."

Following the confirmation, DNR staff conducted a search on Lake Sallie, which is upstream from Lake Melissa in west-central Minnesota. The crew inspected more than 700 items, but no zebra mussels were found. The DNR also briefly searched Mill Pond, downstream of Lake Melissa, and found nothing. Both lakes are connected to Lake Melissa via the Pelican River.

Due to their location downstream, Lake Melissa, Mill Pond and Minnow Pond (Buck's Mill Pond) will be designated as infested. All waters downstream of Mill Pond are already designated as infested with zebra mussels.

This latest zebra mussel discovery underscores the importance of the tax bill signed in May by Gov. Mark Dayton that adds an additional $10 million per year in state spending targeted to local governments for programs to prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species (AIS).

"While this discovery is unfortunate, the AIS funding to our county couldn't have come at a better time," said Tera Guetter, Pelican River Watershed District administrator.

Zebra mussels are non-native species that can crowd out native mussels and compete for food sources with other aquatic animals such as larval fish. They attach to boat hulls and their shells may wash up onto beaches in large numbers.

Becker County officials, the Pelican River Watershed District, area lake organizations and the DNR are partnering to coordinate DNR inspectors and train volunteer inspectors to work at Lake Sallie and Lake Melissa boat accesses. The DNR will designate and post infested waters signs on Lake Melissa and Mill Pond. Becker County has temporarily closed the tram at Dunton Locks County Park between Lake Sallie and Muskrat Lake as a precautionary measure. Zebra mussel search efforts will continue in Lake Sallie and Muskrat Lake.

"These partnerships are critical to the invasive species fight," said Steve Skoog, Becker County Environmental Services administrator. "Our county AIS plan has been developed to deal with these situations and we need all eyes and ears and resources now to help us implement this plan."

The DNR also recently confirmed the presence of zebra mussels in Lake Ida near Alexandria in Douglas County and will designate it as infested, as well as Lake Charley and Lake Louise, which are both downstream from Lake Ida.

Preventing the spread of invasive species takes personal responsibility. Before leaving any water access or shoreland, boaters must remove all aquatic vegetation, dispose of bait, drain all water by removing drain plugs and keep drain plugs out while transporting watercraft.

More information about zebra mussels, how to inspect boats and other water-related equipment, and a current list of designated infested waters is available on the DNR website at www.mndnr.gov/ais.

Maplewood Nature Center Programs

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FREE! Butterfly Garden Tour (Adults)
Tour the nature center butterfly and rain gardens to see the colorful flowers. Learn how to attract butterflies to your yard by planting native plants with nourishing leaves for caterpillars and flower
nectar for adults. Learn which flowers attract bees and hummingbirds so you can design pocket gardens for specific pollinators. Register online by July 10.

FREE! Monarch Open House (All Ages)
SATURDAY, AUGUST 23, 1:00PM - 3:30PM
Drop by to help the naturalist tag monarchs on their way to Mexico. Learn about the monarchs' upcoming journey, and color the Giant Monarch Mural. Learn to identify nectar plants that are important for monarchs in the Nature Center's gardens. Drop-in program.

To register for the Nature Center programs please click here.

Friends of Sax-Zim Bog Newsletter

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View the latest information here.

Aug 2 BioBlitz at Sax-Zim Bog

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BioBlitz II
Saturday, August 2nd: 9am-5pm
Put the date on your calendar! The second-annual BioBlitz will happen on Saturday August 2nd. Join experts in many different fields as they search the Sax-Zim Bog IBA for interesting species. We will have spider experts Larry Weber and Chad Heins on hand to teach you about our fascinating 8-legged neighbors. Larry is also a fungus fanatic and knows his butterflies too. We hope to have dragonfly experts joining us as well.

FREE AND NO RSVP REQUIRED! Just show up and join the fun.
If you want to go in the field with the experts, please show up at the Welcome Center at 9am. We'll all then meet back at the Welcome Center at 1pm for lunch (Bring Your Own) and to share our finds. We'll have some stereomicroscopes on hand too.
If you don't want to go in the field, just join us between 1 and 2pm to see what the experts found.

If you are an expert in an area of natural history and want to lead a group, please let Sparky know! sparky@saxzim.org or 218.341.3350

Aug 20-21 Project WET Facilitator Training

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WHO: Formal & Non-formal Educators, Master Naturalists, University Professors, Extension Agents, Citizen Water-Monitors, Community Leaders, Environmental Educators, Scout/Club Leaders

WHEN: August 20-21, 2014

WHERE: Interstate State Park, St. Croix Falls, MN/WI

COST: $ 75 (with 2.0 guide=$100)
*Continuing credit and Graduate credit available through Hamline University


Educate. Empower. Act.
We invite you to become a water education leader in your community to help train adults who work with youth to teach about the most precious resource on the planet: water. You will experience Project WET (Water Education for Teachers) and place-based activities that focus on clean water resources and correlate to emerging education standards. Featured topics and activities include: camping, canoeing the St. Croix River, studying local watershed with experts, pothole geology, National Parks, mussels, and local watershed management issues. You will walk away as a certified trainer for Project WET and begin leading workshops and sharing water resource information in your communities.

Workshop Learning Objectives:
• Understand the interconnected social, cultural, and scientific trends in your state;
• Access and experience place-based, standards-based, state-based curriculum resources;
• Network and share training models and implementation ideas;
• Acquire and utilize Project WET Curriculum and materials relevant to natural resources in your state and community!

Project WET Registration form for 2014 St Croix Facilitator Workshop (1).pdf

Contact Janine Kohn, Project WET Coordinator, MN DNR
(651) 259-5905, or email: jakohn@state.mn.us

2014 National Park Foundation Summer Scrapbook

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Announcing the 2014 Summer Scrapbook

With summer upon us, we're excited to announce that the National Park Foundation Summer Scrapbook is back for the second year! Help us create a scrapbook showcasing the many different experiences you can have in our over 400 national parks. Share your national park moments and memories of outdoor discovery, learning about history and cultures, simply relaxing and having fun with your friends and family. And if you share a story, you're automatically entered to win a trip for four to Yosemite National Park! Join the Summer Scrapbook »

Categories for Your Summer Scrapbook Entries:

Fun with Friends & Family Celebrations & Achievements
Inspirational Moments Action & Adventure
Hidden Gems & Surprises Making a Difference
Throwback Learning & Discovery

Make sure to get your entries in by September 5! We'll announce 10 finalists in each category on September 9 and then America will vote on their favorites.

Share your favorite national park stories and you could win a trip for four to Yosemite National Park. Enter now to start building your Summer Scrapbook and adding your national park moments and memories. See official rules and prizes.

Summer SNA Nature Notes

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Private Landowners Vital for Protecting Native Plant Communities

By Judy Schulte, SNA Program Prairie Specialist

Of the estimated 235,000 acres of good to excellent prairie remaining in Minnesota (2010 Minnesota Biological Survey), more than 115,000 are privately owned. Private landowners engaged in stewardship of these prairie (and woodland) remnants are essential for long-term conservation. And, when it comes to stewardship, Patricia (Pat) and Larry Wahl, are first-class.

The Wahl's 40 year adventure started when they purchased 80 acres along Plum Creek (near Walnut Grove, Minnesota). At the time, the land was being rented out as pasture with 10 acres of crops. Pat and Larry recognized early on that management was essential to the long-term health of the remnant plant communities on the property. They worked with DNR Forestry to certify their land as a tree farm with the American Forest Foundation in 1979. This preserved the 30 acres of basswood-bur oak and wet-mesic hardwood forests located on site. In 1999, they enrolled the 10 acres of cropland into the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) and seeded it with native prairie species.

In 2006 Pat and Larry invited Minnesota Biological Survey staff to visit their land in order to survey and map the native plant communities. Native plant communities are classified and described by considering vegetation, hydrology, landforms, soils and natural disturbance regimes. Four major plant communities were identified on the Wahl property.

After this inventory, Pat and Larry began working closely with the DNR Scientific and Natural Areas (SNA) Program (which offers protection options for private landowners) to focus on both the forest communities, noted above, and the adjacent 30 acres of dry hill prairie and mesic prairie. The Wahls proceeded to cut down woody species that had invaded the prairie communities, using the wood as a source of heat in their home.

This past spring, with help from the Prairie Plan Partnership and the DNR Working Lands Initiative, Pat and Larry took on their largest adventure yet, working with a local contractor to cut invasive woody species throughout all 60 acres of the site's native communities. Once the contracted cutting is complete, the Wahls plan to use prescribed burning and mowing to help improve prairie quality and minimize future woody invasions. It may be a lot of work, but the legacy they are leaving for their children and grandchildren is unprecedented. In the 100 years since Laura Ingalls Wilder passed through this same area, the Wahls efforts continue historic and aesthetic preservation of the banks of Plum Creek that Laura would have known.

Welcome Kristi!

The SNA Program welcomes Kristi Loobeek, a recent graduate of Concordia University in St. Paul, to her role as Website and Social Media Specialist. Kristi majored in Communication Studies and minored in both Environmental Studies and Writing. Kristi was a scholarship athlete on the University's Division II soccer team and a team captain. Along with being a student-athlete, Kristi was also actively involved with the University's student-run newspaper, The Sword. She was the Production Manager, then Editor-in-Chief. Kristi gained critical experience in the environmental communications world through an internship at the University of Minnesota's partner Clean Energy Resource Teams (CERTs). As their Communications Assistant, she worked with fellow CERTs staff across Minnesota to promote both clean energy practices and energy conservation awareness. Currently, Kristi is a Conservation Corps of Minnesota (CCM) member stationed within the Scientific and Natural Areas Program doing website and social media work. Traditionally, CCM members have only done field work for the DNR; Kristi is one of a handful of members that have individual placements in a DNR office. Her term ends in December with a potential for an extension in 2015. This brand-new position brings exciting possibilities to the SNA Program!

SNA Events

Prairies come into their full glory as summer matures. SNA events have been scheduled across Minnesota to highlight these amazing landscapes, so find one near you or make a day trip out of an event listed below. This is just sampling of a few upcoming prairie events--for a full list of all SNA volunteer projects and events see the SNA Events Calendar.

07/06/14 Kasota Prairie SNA Tour the Kasota Prairie

07/27/14 Felton Prairie SNA Sunset Hike at Felton Prairie

08/03/14 Prairie Bush Clover SNA Guided Walk

08/23/14 Iron Horse SNA Guided Walk

Site Highlight: Hemlock Ravine SNA

SNAs are perhaps best known for protecting undisturbed native plant communities and rare species, as well as being areas to enjoy Minnesota's natural treasures. However, SNAs also give us a glimpse into natural processes, such as succession following disruptive change. An excellent example of an extreme change is presenting challenges and opportunities at Hemlock Ravine SNA.

Located adjacent to Jay Cooke State Park (south of Duluth), Hemlock Ravine is a 50-acre SNA that preserves old-growth northern hardwoods, white pine and eastern hemlock. Minnesota is at the extreme western range of eastern hemlock and the site is one of only a few in the state with a natural population of these trees. Notably, eastern hemlock was recently reclassified from special concern to endangered in Minnesota.

On June 20, 2012, the SNA was decimated when roughly ten inches of rain fell in the Duluth area within just a few hours. Flooding-induced mudslides damaged two deer exclosures (tall fences) designed to protect eastern hemlock seedlings and other native plants from deer browse. Although numerous mature hemlock trees were destroyed, some young hemlock survived, such as the one shown in foreground of the adjacent photo.

Though the damage was extensive, all is not lost. In May, Minnesota Biological Survey ecologists Ethan Perry and Jeff Lee joined SNA staff Cathy Handrick and AmberBeth VanNingen to survey the eastern hemlock population. They focused on the area around the damaged exclosures in order to get a better sense of where to rebuild the fences. Approximately five mature trees, seven saplings, and over 50 seedlings were found including those flagged in the photo below. This was very encouraging to see! It's possible that mudslide events are what created the eastern hemlock habitat in the first place, so the area will be monitored for more seedlings, as well as for invasive species.

The next step for the site will be to rebuild the damaged deer exclosures this summer. The fences will be built to maximize protection of the remaining known eastern hemlock locations. Hemlock trees not protected in the larger exclosures may be fenced with single-tree exclosures until they are above browse-height. The protection strategy for these rare trees at Hemlock Ravine SNA will be rolled into the management plan for the site which will be written later this year.

If you would like to visit Hemlock Ravine SNA, please be aware of the on-going work at the site and the potential for more mudslides. The steep ravine slopes are a sanctuary and closed to general use.

Notes from Site Stewards

Site stewards continue to monitor SNAs across Minnesota. Their observations provide invaluable information to the SNA Program. Here are some interesting notes from reports:

Site stewards Norma Malinowski (Kawishiwi Pines SNA) and Doug Lande (Sand Lake Peatland SNA) along with SNA staffer AmberBeth VanNingen set out on a spring adventure that, as far as we know, no one else has ever tried in the growing season. The three trekked out to Caldwell Brook Cedar Swamp SNA on May 29 to conduct a first ever survey of the plant and bird species of the site. There was a reason it hadn't been surveyed up to this point: it took a grueling hike through alder swamp and cattail marsh with abundant ticks, mosquitoes, and black flies in what turned out to be a 90 degree day to get there and back! Their efforts were rewarded with the cool shade under the tall, old cedars within the SNA, and by the compilation of the first list of the plant and bird species of this remote site.

Mid-April is often peak time for conducting prescribed burns and Racine Prairie SNA had its turn on April 15 of this year. After the burn, conditions were quite good for stewards Nancy and Gregory McDaniels to pick-up trash the following week--and there was plenty it (the site being adjacent to busy U.S. Highway 63 south of Rochester). Although the entire site is only six acres, the couple filled two trash bags.

The bluff country of southeastern Minnesota where Wykoff Balsam Fir SNA is found is noteworthy for its cold and clear streams, many of which are fed by springs. On April 26, Wykoff Balsam Fir site steward Daniel Sheehan reported several springs were gushing from the valley walls for the first time since he began his stewardship visits. Often these springs are dry or only a trickle.

Thanks for all the work you do for SNAs, stewards!

The Minneapolis Central Library is holding an exhibit in its Cargill Gallery with an opening reception on August 14th , 6:30 to 8:30 pm, followed by two related programs.

The exhibit celebrates The Eloise Butler Wildflower Garden, the first native plant garden in the United States, with art works created by artists who are current and past students with the Minnesota School of Botanical Art. All works depict native Minnesota plants currently growing in the garden and are part of a Florilegium, or collection of botanical paintings that serve to document the plants existing in one particular place at a certain point in time. It creates a historical record that will be kept in perpetuity by the Minneapolis Park Board. The work is being done by experienced artists (not school children) and all paintings are admitted to the collection only a by juried selection process. The exhibit also features a soundscape of native bird calls made by a local artist and American Society of Botanical Art members demonstrating the time-honored techniques of painting traditional watercolor renderings of plants.

In addition to the art displayed, rare books on plants will be displayed from the Spencer Collection of Natural History in the gallery and in the Athenaeum located in our Special Collections Department. There will also be a display honoring Eloise Butler and her associates with historical material and circulating books on Botanical Art.

The programs accompanying the exhibit are a lecture on native bees at 7:00 pm and a reception before and after the lecture starting at 6:30 pm that features DNR entomologist Crystal Boyd with the Scientific and Natural Areas Program on Thursday August 21, in the Doty Board Room N280.

This event will be followed by presentations on Saturday, September 6th at 1:pm in the Doty Board Room N280 Central Minneapolis Public Library by Susan Wilkins, Head Gardener at Eloise Butler Wildflower Garden and Bird Sanctuary speaking on the history of the garden and Marilyn Garber, Founder and Director of the Minnesota School of Botanical Art speaking on the history of botanical art. The summer events catalog published by the Hennepin County Library System gives program listings for the July and August events:

Volunteer Seed Collectors Needed!

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Where: Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge - 17076 293rd Avenue, Zimmerman, MN, 763-389-3323, http://www.fws.gov/refuge/sherburne/

Contact: Kris Spaeth, kris_spaeth@fws.gov, 763-219-3068, or Tony Hewitt, Anthony_hewitt@fws.gov , 763-389-3323, x. 14

New volunteers will join an existing team of experienced seed collectors led by long-time refuge volunteers. They may expect to learn a lot and have fun while providing a valuable service. (Last year's seed collectors gathered seed valued at more than $30,000!) Seed collection days and times will vary and include week days as well as weekends; volunteers may participate as their schedules allow. All refuge volunteers must complete a Volunteer Services Agreement before beginning their volunteer work.

Community Tree Survey

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You are receiving this email because you have expressed interest in participating in the Community Engagement and Preparedness program, or CEPP, in Shoreview. As a volunteer with this program you will be joining a committed team of community members interested in learning more about trees and helping their communities gain valuable information about their urban forest. Experts from Tree Trust, City Staff and the U of M will be there to train and assist you along the way as you inventory public and private trees throughout the city.

While no experience is required to participate, your attendance at 2 trainings is mandatory. The trainings for Shoreview are scheduled for next week.

Here are the details:

Day 1

Welcome and Introduction to the Program

Wednesday June 18th from 6:00-7:30 pm

Shoreview City Hall - City Council Chambers
4600 Victoria St. North
Shoreview, MN 55126

Day 2

Tree Identification and Condition Rating Training (aka: What you need to know!)

Saturday June 21st from 9:00 am-2:30 pm. ~ Light lunch will be provided please let us know of any dietary restrictions.

Shoreview City Hall - City Council Chambers
4600 Victoria St. North
Shoreview, MN 55126
And outside. Please come prepared for the weather.

Please RSVP (email or telephone) so we can plan for ample training materials.

Thanks in advance for your assistance on this project. It is people like you who help make this world a better and greener place to live and work. Questions? Don't hesitate.


Karen Zumach, BS
Community Forestry Manager
ISA Certified Arborist: MN-4221A

2231 Edgewood Avenue South
St. Louis Park, MN 55426-2822
E: karenz@treetrust.org
C: 651-334-3726
O: 952-767-3886
F: 952-767-3650


June My Minnesota Woods

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The City of Andover recently received a grant under a program called the Community Engagement and Preparedness Plan (CEPP). In a nutshell, we will be working with Tree Trust and the DNR to recruit volunteers, conduct training and perform tree inventories about the City to help us see what we have out there (in rights of way and private property). Based on this info, we will enhance our Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) management plan, educate property owners, leverage for funding, etc.

The attached letter from Tree Trust is the official letter inviting volunteers. It sounds like the total time commitment for each volunteer (including training) will be 30-40 hours. The inventories will begin this summer. Is it possible for you to advertise this to help us solicit volunteers? This is an exciting opportunity. Any questions can be directed to me or Karen from Tree Trust. Also, if you know of others who may be interested in helping with this, please forward this info on. Thank you!

Kameron Kytonen
Natural Resources Technician
City of Andover
1685 Crosstown Blvd. NW
Andover, MN 55304
phone: 763-767-5137
fax: 763-755-8923

Join the Community Tree Survey Team!

Do you love trees? Have you always wanted to learn more about them? Do you want to do something good for the environment? Then have I got a deal for you!

A new initiative through the City of Andover and the non-profit Tree Trust is the Community Engagement and Preparedness Program (CEPP), started to address the impending threat of Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) - a destructive pest that was inadvertently brought into the U.S. from Asia. First detected in 2002, it has since destroyed millions of ash trees through 19 states and parts of Canada. The closest known infestations are in Hennepin & Ramsey Counties. EAB is close and it could be closer than we think.

To prepare and enable our community to proactively mitigate the impacts of this pest the CEPP is facilitating community tree surveys for the cities of Andover, Hastings, Shoreview and Waconia. The tree surveys will help identify the risk level of our community to EAB and other potential devastations, which will help develop a timeline in order to more effectively manage our community's response to this impending urban forest calamity. It will enable thoughtful planning to ensure our future urban forest is resilient and diverse, achieve eligibility for potential grants, and track the ecosystem services provided by trees - cleaner water and air! All of this will serve to spread out the costs and losses associated with the introduction of EAB over a manageable period of time. The goal is to make efficient use of existing resources, plan for a thoughtful, proactive approach as opposed to a costly, reactive one, putting less strain on staff and budgets.

Now - here is the deal: for the survey process we will need the help of committed volunteers who care about their community. The work will be done during the leaf on season of 2014. Volunteers will receive professional training from experts on tree identification, tree measurements and data collection. Volunteers will be provided all necessary inventory equipment. Volunteers will work when their schedule allows and will have the support of Tree Trust and City staff. If you are at all interested in learning more about this tremendous opportunity to be a part of this innovative project that will increase your knowledge and understanding of trees, introduce you to new people and allow you to be outside - please contact Karen Zumach with Tree Trust, 952-767-3886 or Karenz@treetrust.org.

Wetland Monitoring Volunteers Needed

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The West St Paul WHEP team is in need of some volunteers to help us with wetland monitoring.

Here is a brief overview of the program:
The WEST ST PAUL TEAM is looking for people who are willing to pull on a pair of waders and help us to monitor the health of wetlands in the community through the Wetland Health Evaluation Program (WHEP).

Volunteers will work with our team to monitor and collect information on plants and macroinvertebrates that is used by the city of West St Paul to study health trends in order to better manage wetlands and surrounding areas. Previous monitoring experience is not necessary to take part, and volunteers new to monitoring water resources are highly encouraged to participate.

In the month of June, our team will be collecting macroinvertebrate samples in four wetlands in the city of West St Paul on four Tues/Thurs nights (June 10, 12, 24, & 26). Our team will complete a cross-check site in Eagan for the purposes of quality control on two Tues/Thurs nights (June 17 & 19). Volunteers may attend as many events as they are able.

In the month of July, our team will be monitoring the same wetlands for plants and identified the macroinvertebrates in the lab on the following Tues/Thurs nights: July 8, 10, 15, 17, 22, 24.

We really need some help from great volunteers to monitor the wetlands in WEST SAINT PAUL. We would love to have you join our team!

For more information, visit www.mnwhep.org or call Maggie with the West St Paul team at 651-492-4650 to sign up. Volunteers may also attend any event night to learn more about the program and to sign up at that time.

I'm attaching our 2014_Sampling_Schedule.xls and a 2014 WHEP map.pdfof where the wetlands are located. The zip code for West St Paul is 55118. Volunteers can feel free to contact me with driving directions to the sites.

Free DNR decontamination trainings for lake service provider businesses

The DNR is offering two trainings this summer for lake service provider (LSP) businesses interested in learning how to remove aquatic invasive species (AIS) using hot-water/high-pressure decontamination methods. Participants will receive hands-on practice cleaning boats using the specialized equipment.

"This is our second year offering decontamination training to lake service providers," said April Rust, DNR invasive species training coordinator. "The class helps businesses gain the skills they need - and learn the tricks of the trade - to provide AIS decontamination services to their customers."

Businesses that complete the training will be included on the DNR's online list of lake service providers trained to use hot-water/high-pressure decontamination equipment.

The two trainings have limited space and require pre-registration. They are scheduled on:

• June 18 (1-4:30 p.m.), DNR Brainerd area office, Brainerd.
• Aug. 6 (1-4:30 p.m.), Tonka Bay Marine, Tonka.

Registration deadline is one week prior to each training. Classes will be cancelled if the registration minimum is not reached.

To register, or get more information, contact Rust at april.rust@state.mn.us or call 651-259-5706 or 888-646-6367.

If a lake service provider business does not have an LSP permit yet, basic LSP training is offered in the morning before the decontamination training sessions.

Visit the LSP registration page www.dnr.state.mn.us/lsp/mandatory.html to sign up for training and a permit.

Sept 29-30 Water Trails Tourism Summit

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River's Edge Convention Center, St. Cloud
Registration opens August 1

Join us for the Water Trails Tourism Summit - an interactive and educational gathering of communities, businesses, and user groups. This first-ever event will focus on how paddlesports can increase outdoor recreation tourism, foster economic development, build a sense of community, and provide a better quality of life.

Experience ...
The Mississippi River State Water Trail.

Learn how to ...
Make your community "paddle friendly"
Recruit & support paddlesport businesses
Target your audiences and coordinate the outreach message across sectors of your community
Provide specialized paddling opportunities that create deep connections to place, which result in repeat customers and word of mouth advertising
Engage local paddling clubs to organize and promote Water Trail events and stewardship

Network ...
Meet Water Trail users and advocates from businesses and communities.

Attend if you are a:
Tourism Professional
Paddlesports business that serves Minnesota State Water Trails
Part of local community leadership
Nonprofit or volunteer group that promotes paddlesports recreation

Getting Credit for Appreciating Nature

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Getting credit for appreciating nature
By Daily Staff, Published June 2, 2014
Community College Daily

​In 2010, Jennifer Braido and Kristen Genet, biology instructors at Anoka-Ramsey Community College in Minnesota, re-designed a field biology course to include a naturalist certification program and open it to the community.

Since then, more than 50 students and community members have become certified as Minnesota Master Naturalist Volunteers and completed various service learning projects that have provided innovative learning experiences for students and tangible benefits to the community. Projects have included:

Conducting a sugar maple tree inventory at local nature center
Designing interpretive signs for a local ecosystem science reserve and an environmental education area
Developing pre-K-12 curricular materials about Minnesota's gray wolf, porcupine and fox
Assembling enrichment materials for black bear, gray wolf and cougar enclosures
Investigating potential diseases of captive gray wolves as an undergraduate research project
Designed to develop a corps of well-informed citizens dedicated to conservation education and service in their communities, the Minnesota Master Naturalist Program is co-sponsored by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and the University of Minnesota Extension. Almost every state in the U.S. has such a program, often developed in conjunction with universities and county extension offices. The programs are similar to the Master Gardeners Programs around the country.

Keeping in practice

Enrollees in the Anoka-Ramsey program receive many hours of classroom and field instruction. Upon graduating from training, master naturalists are expected to complete a number of hours of volunteer service in their first year and 20 hours annually thereafter along with annual continuing education requirements.

The program allows six spots for community members along with the 18 spots for Anoka-Ramsey students. That means community members can experience a college-level field biology course while earning the certification without paying college tuition.

"By incorporating this Master Naturalist Certification into our field biology course, we have expanded the age and socioeconomic range of volunteers for the Minnesota Master Naturalist Program to include a younger collegiate audience enthusiastic about conserving the state's natural resources and attracted community members who are not necessarily biology majors, but who may choose to continue taking additional courses here because of their positive experience in this course," Braido said.

One student, Brittany Pedersen, described her experience in capturing and banding birds.

"Mist netting is one of the safest ways to capture and band birds without harming the animal," she said. "Once they are banded, their migration patterns can be tracked. On campus, we captured chickadees, robins and nuthatches. I really enjoyed watching how the different birds reacted to being handled by humans; some of them were reasonably calm, while others were really aggressive."

June Project BudBurst Newsletter

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Congressional Report

Last month, we shared a story about US Congressman Jared Polis' Earth Day visit to NEON. During his visit, we introduced the Congressman to Project BudBurst and had some fun providing him with a Single Report form on which he could record his own plant observations. On May 20th, the Congressman shared a tweet and photo of himself making his first Project BudBurst plant phenology observation of an American linden tree in Washington, DC. Thank you to the Congressman and to Courtney Krause, his Legislative Counsel, for engaging in the science of phenology with us!

--Sandra Henderson, Director

Citizen Science Academy Summer Registration Now Open
Summer is a great time to take a professional development course. Sign up for one of our online courses and be ready to implement citizen science activities in your teaching next year. All of our online courses are eligible for optional graduate-level continuing education credit from the Colorado School of Mines. Go to Citizen Science Academy

Summer Solstice Snapshot
Join us in celebrating the Summer Solstice by making observations of plants in your area this summer! Are your trees in full leaf? Wildflowers blooming? Grasses flowering? As the summer solstice nears, we encourage you to use the extra daylight to take time and make a Single Report. Summer Solstice Snapshot is a great way to make observations of plants while you are on vacation, out on a hike, or just enjoying a local park. For more information, visit Summer Solstice Snapshot

USA Science and Engineering Festival
Last month, Koshland Science Museum in Washington D.C. invited Project BudBurst to be a part of their booth at the USA Science and Engineering Festival. We had loads of fun sharing the science of plant phenology with thousands of students and families from around the country who attended the event. If you were one of those people, thanks for stopping by to talk with us and thanks for being a part of the Project BudBurst family

Nature's Calendar
There are so many active plants this month that we couldn't possibly list them all! Here are just a few to watch for:

Bigleaf lupine
Canada thistle
Indian pink
Purple passion flower
Red columbine

Blue grama
Western wheatgrass
Balsam poplar
Common lilac
Jamaica dogwood

And many, many more!

Get Started with Project BudBurst Now

Choose a Plant by State or Plant Group
Data Map
Educator Resources
My BudBurst

MN Dragonfly Society Newsletter

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The first MDS newsletter can be found 1_MDS Newsletter Spring 2014.pdf