Goals & Objectives:
The goal of this project is to produce natural areas management plans and accompanying user-friendly interpretation for the four properties we manage, which include Matthaei Botanical Gardens, Nichols Arboretum, Horner-McLaughlin Woods, and Mud Lake Bog. These management plans will serve to guide natural areas management for these properties. The interpretation will provide a brief synopsis of each management plan and help the general public understand the importance of managing natural areas.
Theoretical Justification, Social Benefit, or Significance:
The natural area management plans will serve to guide our natural areas management. The user-friendly interpretive materials (signage, brochures or pamphlets, website information, etc.) will help the general public understand the importance of natural areas management.
Specific Activities & Duration:
MBGNA staff will provide a general template and background information for the management plans that the student team can use in developing management plans. Each of the management plans will be accompanied by a user-friendly interpretation that summarizes the overall plan for the general public and explains why and how we manage our natural areas.
The team will assess the data needed for each of the management plans and gather this information from existing datasets and collect new information as needed. Some of the needed datasets (plant lists, management records, historic aerial photos, property boundaries, etc.) will be supplied by MBGNA.
The scale of the project is reasonable for a 16-month project.
The project will benefit from involvement of students with a diverse set of knowledge and skills who can integrate the natural history of these properties with their present management needs. Some the disparate types of information needing integration into a coherent natural areas management plan include the following: glacial geology, soils, botany, zoology, ecology, natural areas management, wetlands, ecosystem/natural community classification, rare species, ecological restoration, stakeholder engagement, aesthetics, planning and design, environmental psychology, and regulations/permitting, etc.
- Cody Bruder
- Alexis Heinz
- Rachael Kluba
- Liwan Zhang