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Wednesday, November 5, 7:30-8:30pm • Hartley Nature Center
Ê With Filmmaker George Desort
Ê Thursday, November 6, 7-8:30pm • UMD’s Marshall Performing Arts Center
Family Night With Wolves and Moose
The Duluth Premier of “Fortunate Wilderness”
American Indian Environmental Ethics Meets Wolf-Moose Research
With Wilderness Scholar Dr. Michael Nelson
Ê Friday, November 7, 12:00-1:00pm • 4th Floor Rotunda, UMD Library
With Biologists Dr. Rolf Peterson and Dr. John Vucetich
Ê Friday, November 7, 7-8:30pm • UMD’s Marshall Performing Arts Center
For more information about these events and more, go to www.d.umn.edu/ceed
•Swenson College of Science and Engineering •Natural Resources Research Institute •College of Education and Human Service Professions •Recreational Sports Outdoor Program •Isle Royale Institute •Minnesota Sea Grant •Center for Environmental Education •VIZ Lab
50 Years of Wolf/Moose Research
This project was funded in part by the Coastal Zone Management Act, by NOAA’s Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management, in cooperation with Minnesota’s Lake Superior Coastal Program.
UMD is an equal opportunity educator and employer.
Minnesota’s Lake Superior Coastal Program Celebrating Lake Superior Science Tom Beery
Center for Environmental Education
University of Minnesota Duluth
Project No. 306-STAR07-08
Contract No. B18558
Acknowledgements: This project was funded in part under the Coastal Zone Management Act, by NOAA’s Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management, in cooperation with Minnesota’s Lake Superior Coastal Program. Other project support was provided by the following organizations: University of Minnesota Duluth: Recreation Sports Outdoor Program, Department of Health, Physical Education and Recreation, Department of Education, Biology Department, College of Education and Human Service Professions, Swenson College of Science and Engineering, School of Fine Arts, Viz Lab; Hartley Nature Center, University of Minnesota Extension Sea Grant, Isle Royale National Park, COSEE-Great Lakes project, Michigan Technological University
Introduction Those of us living along the shore of Superior have a unique relationship with the Lake and its basin. The stark beauty and wild character we treasure are also indicators of the fragility of this still relatively-pristine resource. Faced with increased development and forest fragmentation, climate warming, and invasive species, native plants and animals in the Lake Superior basin are under increased pressures. This project was initiated to increase awareness, understanding, and commitment to protecting these resources by bringing Lake Superior science into the Duluth community in a highly engaging way. No species are more charismatic or more emblamatic of the region than wolves and moose, thus the informative celebration of the 50th Anniversary of the Isle Royale Wolf Moose Studies. 2008 marks the 50th year of the Isle Royale wolf-moose research project. The research, initiated by Dr. Durward Allen in 1958 and currently under the stewardship of Drs. Rolf Peterson and John Vucetich, is the world's longest uninterrupted predator-prey study. The world's scientific community looks to this study both to better understand a dynamic large mammal predator-prey relationship and as exemplary long-term ecological research. Asked by the National Park Service how he would like to observe the 50th anniversary of this work, Dr. Peterson replied that educating teachers and the public were his highest priority. Thus, the 50th Anniversary has developed into a year long educational outreach program. Events have been planned throughout the US to share the findings of the study with a wide variety of audiences. This proposal fulfills the core goal behind Dr. Peterson's request to the National Park Service, i.e., getting the story of the wolf-moose research out to the public in an effort to increase scientific and ecological literacy. The Minnesota coast is inexorably tied to Isle Royale. Movements of certain animal populations came from the Northern shores, indigenous people came and went from the island via the northern shoreline, and the rich cultural history of commercial fishing on Isle Royale is largely a Minnesota story. The coastal communities of Northeast Minnesota have shared and continue to share a lake and a lifestyle with the great island since Lake Superior emerged out of the ice! In addition, on-going interest in wolf populations and current focus on changes in moose populations in Northeast Minnesota make the science of the Isle Royale studies highly relevant to NE Minnesota audiences. Given Duluth’s connection to Lake Superior and Isle Royale, the 50 years of wolf-moose research was deemed a topic of importance for this community; the community response confirmed this idea.
Work Completed Participation: 1. K-5 Isle Royale school programs conducted at Nettleton, Stowe, Grant (Duluth) and Bayview (Proctor) Elementary Schools from Monday to Friday, Nov. 3-7; 25 programs in the schools, serving 1744 students and 117 teachers. 2. Isle Royale Wolf-Moose Family night program at Hartley Nature
Center on Wednesday, Nov. 5. 65 participants.
3. Isle Royale Wolf-Moose Teacher workshop conducted on Friday, Nov.6; 28 teacher participants. 4. UMD classroom visits Nov. 5-7: ENED 1000, ENED 4601, ENED 3341, Digital Visualization Lab, Digital Storytelling course, Center for Environmental Education reception, Biology Seminar, Biology Reception; ~200 students total in these classes. 5. Public events: Fortunate Wilderness movie screening on Thursday, Nov. 6 and Wolves and Moose of Isle Royale presentation on Friday Nov. 7; ~700 participants, 200 students and 500 community. Total Program Participants: 2854 6. The Wolves and Moose of Isle Royale museum exhibit was displayed in the UMD library from Oct. 6-24 and continues to be displayed until February at the Hartley Nature Center. The informal participant numbers are difficult to estimate, but well above 1000 people have been engaged by the exhibit at UMD and HNC. Results The participation numbers for our efforts are outstanding—higher than we had anticipated going in (estimated at 2320). Thus, we feel very confident that we reached our goal of science outreach to the Duluth commuity. Participants approached the topic as interested children, as college students, as artists, as scientists, as teachers, as wilderness enthusiasts, etc. The variety and depth of programs spoke to the interdisciplinary aspect of the Isle Royale Wolf Moose studies. The strong connection between the Duluth area, Lake Superior and Isle Royale was affirmed.
Another significant result of the project was the high degree of community partnership that developed. As you will note from the funds raised to support the visit, we had numerous sources of support for a relatively small total amount of money given the scope of the project ($12, 375). The support cut across the UMD campus and out into the community. One specific aspect of this result is the further strengthened relationship between Hartley Nature Center and the Center for Environmental Education at UMD; this is a university/community partnership with terrific potential. Leveraged Dollars $9100.00 was raised to match the $3275.00 STAR award. The original hope was to match the grant with $6625.00, but the efforts exceeded this amount, both in actual dollars, and also in terms of uncalculated salary and in-kind donations. For example, the National Park Service added an additional staff person to present at area elementary schools; this addition is not reflected in the match, nor is the time of many of the people that helped make the events so successful; the reason everyone’s time was not included was that most of the time was volunteer effort. For example, I did not receive any release time to plan or organize, this effort came in addition to my full workweek of teaching responsibilities, and thus there was not a set salary amount to count as match. One final example of uncalculated donation can be found in Dr. Vucetich’s encouragement for Hartley Nature Center to keep the exhibit much longer than originally planned (it will move to another museum in Feb.). Conclusions Never plan a major community event during a historic election week! Our timing (based on availability of our Michigan guests) was challenging! We did not get the kind of media coverage we had hoped for given the competition we had from the election. Small articles/stories appeared in the following publications/media sources: UMD Statesman
Duluth News Tribune
Fox News coverage
Despite poor press, our numbers proved that the power of posters and community-based outreach (list serves, word of mouth, etc.) still are effective even when you don’t get the attention of major media. The most meaningful reflection from the week is my strengthened belief that Duluthians feel a very strong connection to our wild places--whether it is the shore of Lake Superior at Brighton Beach, Gooseberry State Park, the BWCA or
even Isle Royale! Isle Royale serves as a classroom, not only for visitors to the island, but also for everyone who is captivated by the rich story of wolves and moose. The event was a celebration of one of UMD’s finest classrooms!
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