BIOBLITZ! Citizen Science at Gibraltar Rock

by Free Speech on May 26, 2009

Lodi, WI~

Lodi Valley News serving Lodi, WI & the Lake Wisconsin area with local information since Earth Day 2008.

Lodi, Wisconsin

Citizens of the area are welcome and encouraged to join a team of expert naturalists/scientists to discover the extraordinary plant and animal diversity of Gibraltar Rock.  Friends of Scenic Lodi Valley is hosting a “BioBlitz” at Gibraltar Rock on Saturday, June 13th, from 8:30 to 3pm.  At least four statewide experts in plants and wildlife (birds, mammals) will undertake a
day-long species “inventory” of the state property, part of which is designated a “State Natural Area,” the highest category of  protection of any state property.  State Natural Areas represent the “best of the best” remnant native landscapes of Wisconsin and they house a large percentage of the state’s most threatened plant and animal species, as well as important geological and archaeological sites.

Among the participating BioBlitz scientists are Mike Mossman (DNR specialist in birds and mammals), Sumner Matteson (DNR bird expert), Craig Anderson (DNR botanist) and Dr. Jim Bennett (USGS/UW-Madison lichen specialist). Citizens may accompany the experts as they walk through the forest identifying the species in which they specialize.  This is a great learning and participating activity for young and old alike.  Get deeply acquainted with Gibraltar Rock, and help contribute to the scientific knowledge of the property.  The species inventories developed by the research team will contribute significantly to the future master plan for the property, recently acquired by the State of Wisconsin.

Meet at the Gibraltar Rock parking lot (ca. 1 mile west of Hwy 113 on Co Hwy V, west of Okee) at 8:30am.  All citizens welcome to participate in part or all of the day-long inventory.  Snacks will be provided.  For more information call Charlie Luthin, Gibraltar Rock Team Leader, at 592-4326.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

1 Wendy Soucie June 13, 2009 at 7:59 PM

I attended the session a little late but was able to lead Dr. Jim Bennett around the bluff in search of lichens and also for some graffiti that had been sprayed with paint on the rocks. We found the damaging work by vandals. Dr. Bennett was able to assess the lichens in that location as the DNR wants to clean the paint off. Dr. Bennett found several unique specimens I I won’t attempt to get the names here)that he mentioned he had never seen this far east, or one that grows only on dead standing trees. He collected several samples for the University. I was surprised to find out he is on Twitter and talks about lichens. He has been equally surprised to find out how interested people were on the subject on Twitter. His twitter name is @lichenman and he welcomes you to follow his updates. What an educational day!

Wendy Soucie, Westpoint resident and adjacent to Gibraltar

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