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CONFERENCE SCHEDULE UPDATES & CHANGES: As a result of the prolonged government shutdown, we experienced a number of cancellations and changes to the schedule. Cancellations and changes are listed here (as of January 26, 2019). 

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Poster [clear filter]
Tuesday, January 29
 

6:00pm

(P60) Structural Differences in Two Techniques for Snag Creation in the Huron-Manistee National Forest
AUTHORS. Madison T. Nadler, Brittany A. Shelton-Dooley – Wittenberg University; Kimberly A. Piccolo, Scott A. Warsen – US Forest Service; Richard S. Phillips, Wittenberg University

ABSTRACT.      Snags have great ecological value because they may have cavities, which provide critical habitat for many animals. In the Huron-Manistee National Forest, snags are created in red pine timber plantations to simulate the number of snags typically found in naturally growing forests. This study compares the value of snags created by topping in 2011 to snags created during a prescribed burn in 2010. GIS/GPS was used to locate and mark snag clumps. Height, DBH, decay class (1-5), and cavity presence was recorded for each clump and compared between and across snag creation type. The burned snags were planted in 1936 or 1938 and the topped snags were planted in 1936 or 1965 but the average DBH of each was similar (burned x¯ = 10.8in; topped x¯ = 10.5in). The presence of cavities below 20ft was compared between burned and topped snags. The average height for burned snags was 42.5ft and topped snags were cut at 20ft, but cavities appeared to be located near the tops of snags regardless of their height. The majority of cavities (83.8%) in topped snags were in decay classes one (59.1%) and two (24.5%). In burned snags, the majority of cavities (87.5%) were in decay classes one (18.8%), two (37.5%) and three (31.3%) with decay classes two and three containing the majority of the cavities (68.8%). Below 20ft, topped snags had a greater percentage of cavities (14.9%) than burned snags (6.7%), although there was a greater percentage of cavities in burned snags overall (burned = 24.8%). Creating snags via topping appears to be worth the investment as wildlife appears to use topped snags as much as snags created in a prescribed burn (topped = 49 cavities; burned = 59 cavities). In the future, studies will also compare snags created during the Meridian wildfire of 2010.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D

6:00pm

(P61) Butterfly Response to Barrens Management at Crex Meadows Wildlife Area, Grantsburg, WI
AUTHORS. McKenna Hammons, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point

ABSTRACT. The Northwest Wisconsin Sand Barrens are a unique habitat in decline. Active management is required to maintain this landscape. Butterflies are very responsive to habitat changes. This study aimed to assess the effect of various barrens management strategies on the diversity (i.e. richness and evenness) of the butterfly community at Crex Meadows Wildlife Area, Grantsburg, WI. Butterfly surveys and concurrent vegetation surveys occurred in July and August 2018. Using the Shannon-Weiner diversity index and a Hutchinson t-test I found prescribed fire increased butterfly diversity and richness in the initial years after burn and mowing had no significant effect. These results can be used to guide future management decisions concerning butterfly diversity.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D

6:00pm

(P62) Effects of Prescribed Fire on Small Mammal Community of Schmeekle Reserve, Wisconsin
AUTHORS. McKenna Hammons, Benjamin Tjepkes, Paul Schwabenbauer, Andrew Johnson, Cori Semlar, Miguel Cardenas – University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point

ABSTRACT. Prescribed fire is a management tool commonly used by wildlife biologists to manipulate the habitat on their properties. Research exploring the short- and long-term effects of fire on vegetation and wildlife have increased our understanding of its importance. Our study aimed to assess the effect of prescribed fire on the diversity (i.e., richness and evenness) of the small mammal community in Schmeeckle Reserve on the University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point campus. A prescribed fire was applied to the Berard Oaks subunit in April 2018 and trapping followed in August 2018. Diversity of this site was compared to that of an unburned control site by using the Shannon-Weiner Diversity Index and follow-up Hutcheson t-test. We found the burned area had a significantly higher small mammal diversity than the unburned area. Property managers may use this information to improve their burn prescriptions and their master management plan, especially if maintaining small mammal diversity is a main concern.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D

6:00pm

(P63) Water Uptake Capabilities of Sphagnum Moss
AUTHORS. Mattie Osborn, Nikki Shaw, Dr. R. Koch – Bemidji State University

ABSTRACT. Sphagnum moss is well known for its water holding capabilities, in some cases absorbing more than 16 times its dry weight.  Sphagnum is often considered a keystone species, in part because of its ability to absorb and store large amounts of water, prolonging wetland hydroperiods and raising soil saturation levels.  Currently, 33 species of Sphagnum have been identified in Minnesota wetlands.  The purpose of the research was to determine whether water uptake capabilities vary between different species of Sphagnum commonly found in northern Minnesota.  Moss samples were collected from peatlands in Beltrami County, MN.  Samples were identified, then dried at room temperature and divided into approximately 1 g subsamples.  Distilled water was slowly added to the dried samples until saturation was reached.  Due to the similarities in size, habitat, and location of collection, no differences in water uptake capabilities were expected between the two Sphagnum species studied.  Our results, however, indicated distinct variations in the amounts of water absorbed by different moss species.  We found that Sphagnum capillifolium held 34% more water than Sphagnum fallax.  Sphagnum capillifolium had an average uptake of 14.808 mL/g, and that Sphagnum fallax had an average uptake of 11.017 mL/g.  Peatlands dominated by species that store more water are likely to have increased resistance to drying and prolonged hydroperiods.  These results may have implications for selecting Sphagnum moss species in wetland restoration, or, if used in conjunction with climate change models and species distribution maps, to predict peatland loss.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D