Monthly Archives: April 2015

Travel Tales: The Mountains are Calling

By Brooke Hemze, Natural Resources Foundation With the dawning of UW-Madison’s spring break, five Midwestern girls piled into an SUV for a 19-hour road trip west. No Panama City Beach for us, instead we traveled through Iowa, Nebraska and Colorado, packed in with our packs, an eight-person tent and all the cooking supplies we needed for our meals over the fire. The mountains were calling, and we were heading west. After stopping in small-town Sterling,...

Volunteers help care for Wisconsin’s woods, waters and wildlife

By Olga Bednarik, Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin Volunteers play a vital role in Wisconsin’s conservation efforts by helping respond to conservation needs around the state. In return, volunteers have the opportunity to learn first-hand about the importance of conservation and to be a part of a welcoming community. Wisconsin state natural areas, in particular, benefit from a new corps of volunteers committed to helping remove invasive species, assisting with controlled burns and planting native...

Ducks get sick, too! — A trip to the USGS National Wildlife Health Center

By Caitlin Williamson, Natural Resources Foundation Natural Resources Foundation staff and volunteers had the opportunity to visit the United States Geological Survey National Wildlife Health Center this week, located right here in Madison. Founded in 1975 to help conserve wildlife species by addressing wildlife disease problems driven by pathogens, pollutants, genetics, and environmental conditions, the NWHC is an important resource for us in Wisconsin, and across the country. Wildlife health is an important field, for...

Happy Earth Day from the Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin!

  By Ruth Oppedahl, Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin When I moved to Madison to take this job, I wasn’t sure that I would be able to continue in the city many of my family’s practices from rural Bayfield County to reduce our carbon footprint: heating with a renewable resource, hanging clothes on the line and commuting only a short distance to work. One conundrum we faced in the city was having to drive our dog to a dog...

Congratulations to heron haiku contest winners and entrants

Thanks to everyone who entered or voted in our heron haiku contest! We had a great time reading through your terrific entries, making the task of picking just four finalists very challenging. The haiku by Max Witynski of Madison received the most Facebook “likes,” making him the winner. Max will receive a birding prize pack from the Foundation and our partner Eagle Optics. We’ve posted Max’s haiku, the finalists and all of the other great entrants...

Get involved in one of Wisconsin’s many great citizen science opportunities

By Lisa Gaumnitz, NRF volunteer and local freelancer My husband and I settled onto a camping pad on a hill overlooking a pond and waited in the dark. Armed with binoculars, hot coffee and a clipboard, we were ready for the start of our second stint as participants in the Annual Midwest Crane Count. Our task was to count and record the sandhill cranes we saw or heard in the early morning hours at a...

Inspiration from astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson during Earth Week

Foundation staff Caitlin Williamson and Camille Zanoni and members had an opportunity this week to meet astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson this week as part of UW-Madison’s Nelson Institute’s Earth Day celebrations. Tyson is an American astrophysicist, cosmologist, author, and science communicator and Frederick P. Rose Director of the Hayden Planetarium at the Rose Center for Earth and Space in New York. Tyson ended his talk with this of earth taken from a spacecraft orbiting Saturn: Then...

Raising caterpillars with kids

By Lysbeth Lesak, Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin It’s almost 10 o’clock in the morning when my children and I head back home after a tricycle ride in our neighborhood. It’s an uneventful, though still potentially productive day filled with routines: a morning snack, a midday nap, and a playdate just before dinner. We’re enjoying the late summer weather even though the array of green hues and brightly colored flowers have disappeared. The stellar blue...

A Q&A on winter bat surveys with DNR Mammal Ecologist John Paul White

By Brooke Hemze and Lindsay Renick Mayer, Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin Bats are an essential part of Wisconsin ecosystems, controlling pests and pollinating plants. While the Wisconsin bat population has been healthy, the deadly white-nose syndrome, which was found for the first time in Wisconsin in 2014, is affecting hibernating bats across the United States. If white-nose syndrome continues to spread through Wisconsin, it could cause a dramatic decline in bat populations. The Natural Resources...