Workshops are your chance to learn and apply new skills and methodologies. Pre-registration for workshops is required and will include a nominal fee to cover workshop expenses. Sign up for workshops when you register for the conference. Please note that these sessions may be held concurrent with other conference content (working groups or roundtable conversations), so check the conference schedule before you sign up. Space in each workshop is limited, and sign up is first-come-first-serve, so register early to make sure you get into your desired workshop. Like the rest of the conference, the workshops will be held virtually through a video meeting; all of the workshop instructors are incorporating opportunities for participant interaction and conversation. Note that workshop fees are non-refundable.

Identification of Wisconsin’s Aquatic Plants

Date and Time: Thursday, February 18, 1:30 – 3:30 pm
Registration fee: $20
Instructor: Paul Skawinski, UW Extension Lakes

Learn to identify many of the submergent and floating-leaved plants of wetlands and other aquatic habitats of Wisconsin. Paul will use an abundance of photographs and simple tips to help you distinguish common aquatic plants, and prepare you to dive deeper into identifying rare and difficult species.

Participants are encouraged to purchase a copy of the recently published 4th edition of Aquatic Plants of the Upper Midwest ($40 including S&H) prior to the workshop if they don’t already own it. Paul will be referring to the book throughout the workshop.

Paul Skawinski teaches aquatic botany at UW-Stevens Point and is the author/photographer of the field guide Aquatic Plants of the Upper Midwest. Paul is passionate about all things aquatic and has led dozens of workshops on aquatic plant and animal identification.

Wetland Soils

Date and Time: Wednesday, February 17, 2:00 – 4:00 pm
Registration fee: $20
Instructors: Drew Fowler, WDNR, and Pat Trochlell, The Prairie Enthusiasts

Understanding how soil properties influence wetland productivity is an essential requirement across disciplines of wetland management, restoration, or mitigation. Soils influence water availability, water transport, vegetation communities, and so much more. In this workshop, we will go over the unique and diverse properties of wetland soils and give specific consideration to how different soils facilitate surface and groundwater flows that influence management and restoration practices. This workshop will equip you with the questions to ask of the soils you interact with on “your” wetlands. We will additionally introduce online tools, like the NRCS Web Soil Survey, that provide detailed spatial variability in soil characteristics. We will conclude the workshop by highlighting wetland restoration and management case-histories particularly influenced by soil characteristics.

Drew Fowler is a research scientist at Wisconsin DNR focusing on waterfowl and wetland ecology. Drew studied abiotic factors that influence wetland management in arid floodplain wetlands in New Mexico for his master’s degree.  He received his Ph.D. from the University of Missouri where he studied winter carry-over effects in migratory snow geese.  Drew has guest-lectured in wetland management courses at Louisiana State University and the University of Missouri.  He has also taught wetland management principles in China in coordination with the USGS, USFWS, and the International Crane Foundation.

Pat Trochlell is an ecologist working in wetland, prairie, and oak ecosystems. She retired from WDNR after 30+ years working on wetland regulation, restoration, monitoring, and training issues. She currently does plant community inventories and assessments, teaches natural resource courses, and is on the local chapter board of The Prairie Enthusiasts. She is a state-licensed hydrologist and soil scientist.