Knowing America

The following is a quote by botanist Gerould Wilhelm, in the book A Natural History of the Chicago Region by Joel Greenberg. He is recounting an early experience from his time with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, assessing whether different areas were suitable (low-quality enough) to dump dredge materials. We visited thirteen sites that …

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Glaucous Boxelder

Above demonstrates the glaucous/waxy bloom on a boxelder sapling (Acer negundo). This epicuticular wax functions as a hydrophobic barrier, preventing excess water loss in the new green growth of many plants. The slippery surface of a waxy bloom can both defend against and attract tiny herbivores (e.g. insects). In some cases there is a mutualistic …

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Marking Turtles

Marking turtles at the Cedarburg Bog State Natural Area / University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee Field Station Field Herpetology class. All we found were painted turtles (Chrysemys picta). Some we found had been marked before by previous classes, some not, which gave us an opportunity to learn how to notch the marginal scutes to track …

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