2018 field experiences
This summer, SEWISC helped to place nineteen University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Department of Geography students into fieldwork internships with five mentors throughout Southeastern Wisconsin.
Kaitlyn Kugler, Francesca Sanchez, Luke McArdle, Timothy Kirk, Joseph Flanagan, and Brian Wilson worked with Jerry Ziegler, who manages six nature preserves for The Nature Conservancy in Waukesha and Walworth counties. Interns assisted with high priority tasks including inventory and mapping of invasive plant and native rare plant populations, erosion-prone areas, and native tree plantings. Students also helped to repair and replace bluebird boxes and maintain purple loosestrife biocontrol resources.
Schlitz Audubon Land Manager, Marc White mentored interns Kaitlyn Bisping, Michael Bartz, Alex Hartig, Kevin Casey and Danielle Schwebe who recorded the location and size of garlic mustard and dames rocket clusters. The interns worked as a team to hand-pull, bag and remove clusters and produced a map with the data they collected to guide volunteer groups to larger invasive clusters and document control efforts.
Jason Nickels of the Mequon Nature Preserve received the help of Cheyenne O'Connor and Amanda Robinson who completed a project to identify, map, and measure trees within Charlie's Woods. Cheyenne and Amanda collected GPS points for over 2,000 trees, recorded the species of each tree along with tree diameter to determine the age class distribution. All data was organized in a spreadsheet and gave Preserve staff vital information about this important woodland community.
Ozaukee Washington Land Trust Stewardship Director, Ryan Wallin, mentored David Loken and Austin Nowak. The interns worked together mapping invasive species populations and sending those maps to ArcGIS Collector using tablets and phones. The students contributed additional field data to the maps before transferring all the information to a desktop version of AcrGIS for use by Land Trust staff. David and Austin also helped with manual control of invasive species populations during their time on land trust properties.
Matt Smith, Land Manager at Riveredge Nature Center, received the assistance of Luis Doumanis, Michelle Hess, Michael Jarocki, and Kirra Susalla who surveyed over 150 acres of upland forest, wet forest and Milwaukee River habitat for herbaceous invasive species. The students captured specific information on populations, important to the long term control and management of these species, using ArcGIS Collector. Each population was physically marked to facilitate annual follow-up treatments.
We would like to thank Jerry, Marc, Jason, Ryan and Matt for volunteering to mentor these students and for offering educational opportunities during the summer through which the interns mastered new skills while honing talents gained through their University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee coursework.