Posts in Prairie
Cows, Country Mice, and Clover

Originally Posted by The Prairie Ecologist by Chris Helzer on January 12, 2011

Several years ago, I was walking through one of our restored (reconstructed) prairies in early August, scouting for prairie clover seed harvest sites with one my technicians.  About a week earlier, we’d seen an abundance of prairie clover blooming in the same prairie, so we were coming back to see whether it was going to make seed or not.  

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PrairieNicole Porter
Cerulean Warbler Habitat

The Cerulean Warbler breeds in large blocks of mature upland and lowland hardwood forests (Hamel 2000) and, in Wisconsin, occurs most often in oak-hickory and maple forest types (Mossman 2006). It is considered to be area-sensitive, but appears to possess a degree of plasticity in its habitat affinities (Jones et al. 2001). Habitat measures such as extent of canopy, tree species composition, stand age, and tract size vary considerably across its range (Hamel 2000).

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PrairieNicole Porter
Violets, violets and more violets: Plant a flower, Feed a Fritillary

Overview

Regal fritillary (Speyeria idalia), a butterfly presently listed as a Federal Species of Concern and Endangered in Wisconsin, has been found in large grassland areas with tallgrass prairie remnants or lightly grazed pasture lands containing prairie vegetation. The larval food plants are violets, primarily prairie violet (Viola pedatifida), birdsfoot violet (V. pedata) and arrowleaf violet (V.sagittata). Adults are present between late June and early September with peak flight usually the first part of July.

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Milkeeed: Plant a Flower, Feed a Monarch

Asclepias species produce some of the most complex flowers in the plant kingdom, comparable to orchids in complexity: Whorled, Purple, Prairie, Antelope, Horse tail. All members of the genus Asclepias are appealing to Monarch butterflies and caterpillars. Nine species grow in Crawford County but only four are available at local nurseries. I’m going to show you six more today.  

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