LRP - Licenses

LRP - Regulations

LRP - Permits

Recreation - Statewide

Recreation - Trapping

Recreation - Fishing

Recreation - Hunting

Env. Protection - Management

Env. Protection - Emergency

Env. Protection - Resources

To sign up for updates or to access your subscriber preferences, please enter your contact information below.



 
  • Subscribe to receive citizen-based monitoring updates
Find
volunteer programs in your area!
Join
the Citizen Monitoring Network of Wisconsin.
Become
a volunteer safety instructor.
Contact Information
For information on volunteering with Wetlands, contact:
Brock Woods
Program Coordinator
Division of Water Watershed Management
608-266-2554

Wetlands

Ephemeral Ponds Monitoring

Volunteer at the  Riveredge Nature Center.
Volunteer measuring water line at Riveredge Nature Center training. Photo Courtesy Mary Holleback.

The purpose of this project is to train citizens to identify, inventory, and monitor the ecology of ephemeral ponds. Ephemeral ponds are present only a portion of the year. They usually dry up in late summer but are available as habitat for a variety of amphibians, macroinvertebrates, and wildlife during spring and early summer. The data collected will help us to better understand the location and ecology of Wisconsin's ephemeral pond habitats. Adults in Sheboygan, Ozaukee, Milwaukee, Racine, Kenosha, Waukesha, Washington, and Walworth counties are invited to participate. Visit the WEPP website for more details and for information for how to sign up. To Get Involved: Contact program coordinator Mary Holleback of Riveredge for information.

Purple Loosestrife Biocontrol

Purple loosestrife.
Purple Loosestrife.

This may be the most viable long-term control method, promising to greatly reduce the need for other more costly and disruptive control methods. The DNR and UWEX, along with hundreds of citizen cooperators, have been introducing natural insect enemies of purple loosestrife, from its home in Europe, to infested wetlands in the state since 1994. Careful research has shown that these insects are dependent on purple loosestrife and are not a threat to other plants. Insect releases monitored in Wisconsin and elsewhere have shown that these insects can effectively decrease purple loosestrife's size and seed output, thus letting native plants reduce its numbers naturally through enhanced competition.

A suite of four different insect species has been released as biological control organisms for purple loosestrife in North America and Wisconsin. 2 leaf beetle species ("Cella" beetles), that feed primarily on shoots and leaves were the first control insects to be released in Wisconsin, and are the insects available from WDNR for citizens to propagate and release into their local wetlands. A root-mining weevil species and a type of flower-eating weevil have also been released and are slowly spreading naturally. The Purple Loosestrife Biocontrol Program offers cooperative support, including free equipment and starter beetles from WDNR and UWEX, to all state citizens who wish to use these insects to reduce their local purple loosestrife.

The length of time required for effective biological control of purple loosestrife in any particular wetland ranges from one year to many, depending on site size, loosestrife density, etc., so now is the time to get it started in all infested wetlands. The process offers effective and environmentally sound control of the plant, not elimination in most cases. It is also typically best done in some combination with occasional use of more traditional control methods such as digging and herbicide use. And though biocontrol insects may need occasional replenishment on any given site over time for best control, now is the time to start capitalizing on the efficiency of the process and reducing the use of typical chemical solutions in your wetlands.

Though purple loosestrife is almost certainly here to stay in Wisconsin, we should be able to efficiently protect our wetland ecosystems from domination by purple loosestrife by simply restoring some of the natural checks and balances that can result in diverse, healthy environments. You can be part of this solution.

To Get Involved: If you have any questions or comments about the program, please contact me at Purple Loosestrife Project, DNR Science Operations Center, 2801 Progress Road, Madison, WI 53716, at brock.woods@wisconsin.gov, or call (608) 221-6349.

Contact Information
For information on volunteering with Wetlands, contact:
Brock Woods
Program Coordinator
Division of Water Watershed Management
608-266-2554
Last Revised: Thursday August 21 2014