It is time to register for the Grassland Restoration Network’s 2016 workshop. The Grassland Restoration Network has helped people working on prairie restoration share techniques and conservation strategies since 2003. You can read my blog post from last year’s workshop in Minnesota here and from the 2014 workshop at The Nature Conservancy’s Nachusa Grasslands in Illinois here.
One of the best ways to learn from each other is to visit each others’ projects and evaluate them together. 2015 Grassland Restoration Network workshop – Minnesota.
The 2016 workshop will be September 13-14 right here in Nebraska. It is co-hosted by The Nature Conservancy’s Platte River Prairies and Prairie Plains Resource Institute. You can see the agenda and other information for the workshop here.
Registration for the workshop is open now through August 19. There is no registration fee for the first 75 people to register, but you’ll be responsible for your own transportation and lodging, and some meals. To register, send an email to Mardell Jasnowski at mjasnowski(at)tnc.org. Include answers to the following questions:
Will you take part in the optional Tuesday morning tour in Aurora?
Will you be eating Tuesday evening supper?
Will you be eating Wednesday lunch?
Do you have any dietary restrictions? If so, list them here:
Thank you to Pheasants Forever and the Nebraska Environmental Trust for helping to cover the costs of registration for this conference.
The Grassland Restoration Network is a loose affiliation of people trying to use prairie restoration (reconstruction) as a way to rebuild, conserve and sustain grassland ecosystems. Each year, we put on a workshop to share ideas, techniques, research results, and stories with other. Workshops are hosted by a different site each year, giving us the opportunity to visit a range of projects over the years.
The next workshop will be hosted here in central Nebraska (near Grand Island) on September 13 and 14, 2016. We’ll visit sites owned by both Prairie Plains Resource Institute and The Nature Conservancy (Platte River Prairies). As always, we will compare notes on restoration techniques and we will look at a variety of plantings, from brand new to more then 20 years old. In addition, however, we will talk about how to evaluate the success of restoration projects beyond simply counting plant species. We will tour restored sites with a number of researchers who have helped us see whether we’re actually restoring ecological function at our Platte River Prairies – including whether or not we are defragmenting the landscape for a variety of insect and animal species.
Bill Kleiman (white hat) leads a tour of a restored prairie at The Nature Conservancy’s Nachusa Grassland during the 2014 Grassland Restoration Network workshop.
Grassland Restoration Network workshops typically include people from around the Central United States and beyond. I hope you’ll consider attending this workshop to learn from others and contribute your ideas and experiences. The cost will be kept as low as possible, and will probably include primarily food and lodging.
You can click on the following links to read reports from the last couple of workshops (2014, 2015) and to see a collection of lessons learned by network members.