Category Archives: Prairie Management

An Adjusted Aesthetic and Reflections on Portraying Change

I have long admired the work of Stephen Packard.  His book  The Tallgrass Prairie Restoration Handbook (co-authored with Cornelia Mutel), for example, is a classic among restoration practitioners.   More importantly, he observes, reflects, and shares his thoughts in ways that influence … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Management, Prairie Natural History, Prairie Photography | Tagged , , , , , , | 13 Comments

Patches of Fire and Habitat

It’s been a difficult year for conducting prescribed fires so far – the wind seems to be blowing even harder and more consistently than in recent memory.  And that’s saying something, living in the Great Plains. A couple of weeks … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Animals, Prairie Insects, Prairie Management, Prairie Photography, Prairie Plants | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

Hubbard Fellowship Blog – First Burn of the Season

It’s burn season on the Platte and our team is foaming at the mouth to get some fire on the ground. Prescribed fire is completely dependent on suitable weather conditions, so almost every day we wake up hopeful to burn, … Continue reading

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Photo of the Week – March 13, 2014

Here are two photos that caught my attention as I was going through timelapse imagery the other day… In my last post, I showed some timelapse photos from a fenceline at The Nature Conservancy’s Niobrara Valley Preserve in north-central Nebraska.  At … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Management, Prairie Photography | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 17 Comments

Just When I Think I’ve Got Something Figured Out…

I pay close attention as I walk through prairies.  I watch for tracks to see what animals are around and I notice which flowers are blooming and which insects are feeding on them.  Often, I notice changes in prairie plant communities and try to attribute them to our management treatments, weather … Continue reading

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Assessing Prairie Restoration Through the Eyes of Small Mammals – Part 1

We’ve taken another step in the right direction… Over the last several years, we’ve begun to evaluate our prairie restoration work beyond just looking at plant communities.  Our primary objective for restoration is to functionally enlarge and reconnect fragmented remnant (unplowed) prairies by restoring the land … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Animals, Prairie Insects, Prairie Management, Prairie Natural History, Prairie Restoration/Reconstruction | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 19 Comments

Bison Good, Cattle Bad??

Among some prairie enthusiasts, there seems to be a perception that plains bison are magical creatures that live in complete harmony with the prairie.  They eat grasses but not wildflowers, they float just above the ground to avoid stepping on plants or … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Animals, Prairie Management, Prairie Natural History, Prairie Plants | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 65 Comments

Embracing Unpredictability in Prairie Management

Much of what determines the outcome of prairie management treatments is out of our control.  Sure, we can decide when to burn a prairie or set the timing and stocking rate for grazing treatments, but cascades of interactions between countless factors such as weather, … Continue reading

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A Prairie Ecologist Holiday Reading List

If you’re like me, this period just before and after the New Year provides a good opportunity to enjoy some quality reading time.  Maybe you’ve already got a stack of books or list or blog posts you’re waiting to read.  If not, maybe I can … Continue reading

Posted in General, Prairie Animals, Prairie Insects, Prairie Management, Prairie Natural History, Prairie Photography, Prairie Plants | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Best of Prairie Ecologist Photos – 2013

As promised, here are some my favorite photos from 2013.  It was really tough to narrow these down to 22 (it was going to be 21, but see below) out of the roughly 1,800 images that were “keepers” from my various photography jaunts this year. … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Animals, Prairie Insects, Prairie Management, Prairie Natural History, Prairie Photography, Prairie Plants | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments