Tom's Blog

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Interns starting to work

Kathie and I have been managing the Prairie Partners summer internship program for Madison Audubon Society for 4-5 years now. This year we have another nice group of college students whose long-term interest is in restoration ecology. The team rotates through five separate sites, and Pleasant Valley Conservancy's day is Tuesday. Amanda serves as their supervisor, and since she was an intern herself 3 years ago, she is well suited to the task.

After a morning of orientation to the Conservancy, the interns started work with a vengeance. The East Basin, our newest reconstructed prairie, is only in its second growing season, and still has lots of undesirables. They covered this whole 5 acre site, digging bull thistle, mullein, and garlic mustard (a small patch), among other things. Despite the bad guys, they found lots of desirable plants, including shooting star, lupine, spiderwort, prairie dock, lots of old-field thistle, and many more good prairie species. The burn we carried out on this "prairie" about 6 weeks ago probably helped get it started for the year.

Welcome, interns!


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