ES 395: Field Studies in Wisconsin's Ecoregions
This course will take students around Wisconsin, learning the native plants, natural communities, and ecoregions of our state.
Scientists, natural resource managers, and nature writers all base their work on an in depth and intimate understanding of the natural world. Central to that understanding is knowledge of native plants, natural communities (such as maple-basswood forest, prairie, and bog), ecoregions, watersheds, and geology. This course is an opportunity for students to get out of the classroom and learn about the ecosystems in our state. The first offering of this course ran from May 16 to June 3, 2011. In the 2013 offering, students will keep a field notebook and there will be two tests. They also will choose between quantitative analysis of plant communities, comparative environmental policy analysis of the different sites, or a nature journal, To pay for the transportation and lodging, there was a special course fee of $335 per student.
The course in 2011 began with a brief in-class introduction to native plants, natural communities, and ecoregions of Wisconsin. Then we spent nearly three weeks traveling to ecologically rich sites in our state.
You can see albums of student photos of the sites we visited on the ES Facebook page
What did we find? LOTS of friends and neighbors. Click here is a list of the species we encountered.
Tentative syllabus for 2013
>> there might be some changes, but this will be the main structure.
Here are the sites we plan to visit
Peninsula State Park
The Ridges Sanctuary State Natural Area
Cathedral Pines State Natural Area
Terrell's Island (Lake Butte de Morts)
Roche-A-Cri State Park
Sandhill State Wildlife Area
Necedah National Wildlife Refuge
Devil's Lake State Park
Spring Green State Natural Area
Aldo Leopold Shack and Leopold Legacy Center
Kettle Moraine State Forest-Northern Unit
UW Milwaukee Field Station and the Cedarburg Bog State Natural Area
Kohler-Andrae State Park
What are the native plants, natural communities, and ecoregions of Wisconsin? Check out these websites.
* Wisconsin's plants and webpages with information
* Wisconsin's Natural Communities
* Wisconsin's Ecological Landscapes (Ecoregions)
* Wisconsin's Watersheds