Planting Prairie for Pollinators & Other Wildlife
Saturday, August 11
9:00 – 1:00 pm
In this class we will cover the issues concerning our native pollinators and how we can integrate tallgrass prairie into our landscape to provide resources for pollinators and habitat for other wildlife like grassland birds. You will take home the skills necessary to establish a tallgrass prairie in your backyard or on your farm or rural land. We will also construct native bee houses for you to take home.
Instructor: Dr. John Delaney, VSN Agroecologist
Location: Driftless Folk School Campus
Oak Ecology & Bird Habitat Workshop$10.00
Saturday, May 12
May 12 will be a special day in Crawford County, of exploring forest management, especially oak regeneration, and seeing and hearing forest birds. The arrival of long distance migrants will be in full swing. We will have bird and forest experts including Randy Hoffman, retired DNR Natural Areas specialist, Mike Mossman retired DNR Biologist, Lisa Hartman, retired DNR Biologist, Barbara Duerksen, ornithologist, who leads bird field trips, conducts bird surveys and counts. Mississippi Valley Conservancy Executive Director Carol Abrahamzon and Conservation Director Abbie Church will be with us to discuss Conservation Easements.
We will also have a very special guest, Rob Nurre, an historian who studies the first land surveyors written notes, observations and documentation of the landscape. These surveyors trekked for miles prior to and during European settlement. Rob will personify Mr. Wittse, who walked through Scott Township in the early 1800s, and talk to us about what he saw and how he accomplished his documentation of the land in those early days. This will be an eye opening experience to broaden our understanding of what might be done to restore the land to a healthier more biodiverse environment.
The day will begin with an optional early morning bird walk. If you are interested, please meet at the property at 7:30 am. After, we will join with the full group at 9 am for programming and additional forest and bird walk. We will conclude the day with a pizza lunch from a wood-fired pizza oven. The cost of the workshop is $10.
Instructors: Maggie Jones & David Linton, landowners/conservationists; Randy Hoffman, retired DNR Natural Areas specialist; Mike Mossman, retired DNR forest ecologist; Lisa Hartman, retired DNR biologist, Barbara Duerksen, Ornithologist, and Rob Nurre, Historian.
Location: 41425 Spring Valley Lane, Blue River, WI (Crawford County)
Directions: This property is off of Cty S between Hwy 61 and Cty F. A map will be provided to each participant upon registration.
Prairie STRIPS and Conservation EasementsFree!
Friday, August 17
10:00-12:00 pm (with lunch to follow)
Planting native tallgrass prairie as a buffer at the edge of crop fields can provide multiple services from improving water quality and soil health to providing resources for pollinators, birds, and other wildlife. Research from Iowa State University’s prairie STRIPS project has demonstrated that prairie buffers can significantly reduce sediment and nutrient export as well as improving water infiltration. We’ll tour a recently installed prairie strip on a property just outside of Viroqua, Wisconsin. The landowner, Dr. John Van Dyke, and John Delaney, agroecologist at Valley Stewardship Network, will share information and show the new conservation practice called Prairie STRIPS.
The second conservation practice to be presented will be conservation easements. Megen D. Kabele, conservation specialist at Mississippi Valley Conservancy, will provide information about creating a conservation easement to conserve your land in perpetuity, as well as ensuring long-term maintenance of conservation practices like prairie STRIPS. Come learn about the new conservation practice of prairie STRIPS and about opportunities for conservation easements.
Instructors: John Delaney, VSN; Megen Kabele, Mississippi Valley Conservancy
Location: Van Dyke Farm (directions provided upon registration)
Water Action Volunteers: Level I Training- AFree!
Saturday, April 28
Landowners and community members are encouraged to come and learn about this unique citizen science opportunity. Volunteering only requires 6 days a year, an hour each month from May to October! Topics covered in this training include: stream ecology, water quality measurements, stream-side habitat assessment, macroinvertebrate diversity, and data submission. Monitoring equipment will be loaned to interested volunteers. Please bring hip boots/waders if you have them, a pencil, and clipboard. Snacks and refreshments will be provided.
Instructors: John Delaney, VSN; Meg Wise, CSP; WAV Volunteers
Location: West Fork Sportsmans Club, 3574 County Road S, La Farge