Thursday, 25 July 2019

Score big with Wisconsin Wetlands Field Trips

image of the Fish Creek estuary in Ashland County.

Fish Creek Estuary is a haven of bio-diversity at the head of Chequamegon Bay.

Make the summer of 2019 a real hit with this triple play from the Wisconsin Wetlands Association. As part of their 50th Anniversary celebration, WWA is offering field trips to some of coolest wetlands in Wisconsin. There are three field trips, all quickly coming up. So fit at least one of these into your calendar and make it a summer you will not soon forget.

image of springs in the Chippewa Moraine wetlands.

Wetlands are all about the place where water and the land meet.

 

 

 

 

Field Trips

July 27, 29019 – Wetlands of the Chippewa Moraine. Treat yourself to a diverse tour of the bogs, sedge meadows, and ephemeral ponds that make up the Deerfly Swamp State Natural Area. Wear rubber boots because this is a walk for those who aren’t afraid to get their feet wet.

August 1, 2019 – Wetlands of the Penokee Hills. You may know the Penokee Hills as part of the Gogebic Range that was the site of proposed iron mining several years ago. Take a walk through interesting wetlands that are the home of cold water brook trout, beaver, and trumpeter swans. Learn how these wetlands capture runoff and provide cool, clean water to the creeks and rivers downstream, all the way to Lake Superior.

August 16, 2019 – Paddling the Fish Creek Estuary. This fish creek is not in Door County. This fish creek feeds the Chequamegon Bay in Ashland County. This is an important Lake Superior fish spawning grounds that is packed with wildlife in an incredibly bio-diverse setting.

image of Penokee Hills wetlands.

A creek flows through the wetlands of the Bad River watershed.

Add some excitement to your summer with a field trip to one of Wisconsin’s delightful wetlands. Treat yourself and your family to an adventure into some of the most interesting and diverse ecosystems in Wisconsin. You will be batting a thousand when it comes to making nature a big part of your summer enjoyment.

May 2019

Friday, 24 May 2019

Farming Better Wetlands

Seventy-five percent of Wisconsin wetlands are privately owned. When private landowners act to conserve those wetlands, we all benefit. Wetlands provide much of the groundwater recharge that we all depend on to make sure our wells have enough water for our homes and families. We all depend on wetlands for flood control during the spring thaw and heavy rains. They also filter out sediments that would otherwise clog our rivers and streams.

Wetlands also provide water, food and shelter for a wide variety of wildlife we all enjoy. Likewise, wetlands are critical resting places for migrating birds.

Farmers’ Role

Farmers are the largest group of private wetland owners. They live on the land and make their living from the soil. As stewards of their land, farmers make decide how to best use their property. They can protect wetlands or ignore them. In the past, farmers often drained or degraded wetlands to make way for grazing and cropland.

Today, farmers take a different view of the places they used to see as wasteland. Farmers like Nick and Dianne Somers, potato farmers in Plover, are leading a revolution on the farm. Wetland are starting to get the attention and respect they deserve. Nick shares his love for the wetlands on his property in a Wisconsin Wetlands Association video, Farmers Care for Wetlands.

The Wisconsin Wetlands Association produced it as part of a six part video series, celebrating American Wetlands Month and their 50th Anniversary. They provide information and assistance to farmers and other private landowners in Wisconsin who want to preserve their wetland resources. You can also check out our Resources page.

Wetlands Future

Wisconsin farmers hold the future of our wetlands, the groundwater and biodiversity in their hands. Nick believes, “It’s something everybody should do.” When you choose to protect and improve your wetlands, you are making an investment in your family’s future and the wildlife that call you farm home. As Wisconsin’s most important land stewards, the decisions you make will ensure we all continue to enjoy the this great natural heritage.

 

Wednesday, 22 May 2019

Landowners Care for Wetlands

Landowners Karen and Marty Voss have owned their land near Eau Claire since 1981. They like you, the they take great pride in their land and want to do what they can to conserve it. Over the years, they have spent untold time and energy improving their wetlands. Karen and Marty did it for their own enjoyment, as well as to be good stewards of their little corner of the watershed.

According to the Wisconsin Wetland Association, “Private landowners own 75% of Wisconsin’s remaining wetlands and as much as 85% of potentially restorable wetlands, giving them a vital role in caring for wetlands.”

 

The Wisconsin Wetland Association produced this video as part of their 50th Anniversary celebration. It is part of a six part series of Wisconsin wetland videos. Check out the entire series and get better acquainted with their work.

Conservation Digest and the Wisconsin Wetlands Association are your partners in conservation. We can help no matter what kind of wetland you own or its condition. Check out our resources and events. Find out how you can improve the diversity and functioning of the wetlands you call home.

2017

August 2017

Sunday, 13 August 2017

Little Things Mean a Lot

A new Ontario study shows that destruction of small wetlands can increase algae blooms in the Great Lakes basin. The Canadian Press notes that while government agencies tend to focus more of their attention on large wetland remediation projects, smaller wetlands actually punch above their weight when it comes to filtering out nutrients from runoff.

Authors, Nandita Basu and Fred Cheng, writes in Water Resources Research, Biogeochemical hotspots: Role of small water bodies ilandscape nutrient processing, “Results suggest that small wetlands play a disproportionately large role in landscape-scale nutrient processing.”

Their conclusions suggest that what you do as an individual landowner makes a real difference. “Thus, given the same loss in wetland area, the nutrient retention potential lost is greater when smaller wetlands are preferentially lost from the landscape. Our study highlights the need for a stronger focus on small lentic systems as major nutrient sinks in the landscape.”

The Wisconsin Wetlands Association publishes My Healthy Wetland a handbook for landowners. They also host workshops and publish a quarterly e-newsletter.