Prairie Park updates

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July 31, 2023

Report #2: Researchers completed the second round of surveys. The effect of spraying on the landscape is still very noticeable, with a much more diverse and colorful assemblage of flowers present in the areas where the herbicide application was incomplete or absent. Many of the plants that we observed in May to be only damaged by the spray were still alive during this survey. Time will tell if these plants persist into the following year, but their continued presence on the landscape is a heartening sign. While it is still too early for us to draw any conclusions about the long-term effect this spraying event will have, we continue to be cautiously optimistic about the recovery of the plant community.  

May 31, 2023

Report #1: Initial surveys of the Prairie Park Nature Center remnant have been completed. There were some observations of resprouting among our hardier prairie species, and several species seem to have only been lightly affected by the herbicide spraying. This, combined with incomplete coverage of the site gives us some hope for, at the very least, a partial recovery. However, at this time it is too early to draw any conclusions about the long-term effects of the spraying. We will return to sample in July and September this year and again next June, at which point we will be able to look at the recovery of the plant community and determine what measures are needed to assist the prairie in its recovery.

May 22, 2023

Researchers Sara Baer, Kelly Kindscher, Caleb Morse and Nathaniel Weickert met at the prairie remnant for baseline monitoring and to develop a plan for monitoring throughout the season. Morse very recently had developed a list of native and invasive species at the site; with minor revisions, this list will be used for monitoring the site following the spraying. See May 22 photos.