It has been an action-packed start of the year to say the least for the Student Chapter of TWS of UW-Madison! We are excited about all of our new members and the amazing lineup of speakers and events the officer team has planned. Some of our recent events include our annual Devil’s Lake hiking and camping trip, volunteering at the 2016 Wisconsin Bat Festival in Milwaukee, and saw-whet owl banding. Additionally, we sent 6 members to the 23rd Annual TWS Conference held in Raleigh, NC. Many of us had the opportunity to make career connections and build communication among other student chapters.
A few upcoming events of ours include a ‘Conflict Resolution Workshop’ with members from UW Stevens Point. This event provides members the chance to build valuable interpersonal and communication skills useful to the profession, but may not necessarily learn in the classroom. Another time-honored event is the pilgrimage to Aldo Leopold’s shack in Baraboo. This will be led by an expert in the matter, Emeritus Professor Dr. Stan Temple. Scheduled for November 20th, members will be able to learn about the historical connection that the University of Wisconsin-Madison has within the field of wildlife ecology. This trip also coincides with the Sandhill Crane migration in which attendees will have the opportunity to experience while there. The UW-Madison Student Chapter is also preparing for our annual Game Dinner fundraiser. The dinner is scheduled for Friday December 9th on campus and anyone is welcomed to attend. At this event, we host faculty, students, and community members in an enjoyable night that includes a wild game feast, silent auction, and raffle prizes.
This year, our chapter is working collaboratively with UW-Stevens Point graduate Marcus Mueller and the UW Urban Canid Project. Under Dr. David Drake, a Madison professor and outreach specialist, the project is designed to help us gain a better understanding of the behavior and movements of coyotes and foxes in urban and residential settings. From this, we will be able to find ways in which we can live with these wild canids in our backyards. Marcus is aiming to increase student involvement in the project by having a trained team of radio- telemetry trackers and trappers so the project can continue when he finishes his M.S. this spring.
All in all, this fall semester is going better than I anticipated for our chapter. With a great team of officers and a new batch of devoted members, the rest of the fall semester is poised to become one for the books!