Category Archives: Prairie Restoration/Reconstruction

Every Little Bit Helps

I’m getting excited about this upcoming field season.  For the first time in several years, we’re going to be attempting to harvest seed from as many prairie plant species as we can.  Between about 1997 and 2005, we spent much of … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Plants, Prairie Restoration/Reconstruction | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

Why Does Plant Diversity Matter? Help Us Figure It Out!

How important is plant diversity in restored prairies? Are diverse prairies more resistant to drought and invasive species than less diverse prairies? How does plant diversity influence invertebrate communities and their ecological functions? These kinds of questions have been the focus … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Management, Prairie Natural History, Prairie Plants, Prairie Restoration/Reconstruction | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Photo of the Week – February 12, 2015

Last week, Jasmine (one of our two Hubbard Fellows) and I spent a morning at the Derr Wetland Restoration here in the Platte River Prairies.  We wanted to get some photos and video of the site before the latest snow … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Animals, Prairie Natural History, Prairie Photography, Prairie Restoration/Reconstruction | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

Seeing Past the Ugliness

I’ve spent much of my career restoring prairie, and I gain immense satisfaction from watching bare ground turn into beautiful prairie.  Following the lead of Bill Whitney and Prairie Plains Resource Institute, we have tried to harvest seed from as … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Plants, Prairie Restoration/Reconstruction | Tagged , , , , , , , | 25 Comments

Ruminations on Tree Planting and Prairie Conservation

Trees are great, but trees in and around prairies can negatively impact habitat quality for many grassland plant and animal species and provide points of introduction for invasive species.  Encroachment by trees has become a major threat to prairie conservation … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Natural History, Prairie Photography, Prairie Plants, Prairie Restoration/Reconstruction | Tagged , , , , , , | 26 Comments

Karen’s Wetland Videos

One of my favorite places within our Platte River Prairies is a restored wetland we usually call “the sandpit wetland” because it is a former sand and gravel mining pit.  We restored the site over about 10 years, a little … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Animals, Prairie Natural History, Prairie Photography, Prairie Restoration/Reconstruction | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 13 Comments

So Similar, Yet So Different

It’s wrong to assume that successful restoration or management tactics from one prairie will work in another.  Instead, every prairie has its own “personality” and responds accordingly.  The key to success is experimentation and adaptive management. Bill Kleiman is one … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Management, Prairie Natural History, Prairie Plants, Prairie Restoration/Reconstruction, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

Our New Mechanical Seed Harvester

Seed harvest is a big part of our work here at the Platte River Prairies.  We don’t do as much complete restoration (converting cropland to high-diversity prairie) as we used to because we’ve just about run out of land to … Continue reading

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A Special Volunteer

Volunteers are a critical part of our stewardship work at the Platte River Prairies.  We don’t have a lot of them, but we’ve been lucky to have some great ones.  All of our volunteers are appreciated, but we have special … Continue reading

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Emergence of Life in a Wetland

After many years of wanting to, we finally installed some solar-powered pumps and livestock water tanks in our family prairie.  (Thanks to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Nebraska Game and Parks for providing cost-share money!)  Those two water … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Insects, Prairie Natural History, Prairie Photography, Prairie Plants, Prairie Restoration/Reconstruction | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments