Here’s what’s happening in the North Central Section Part 2

Below is a summary of recent Student Chapter activities within the North Central Section of The Wildlife Society, which was included in the Section’s Spring 2019 newsletter. The newsletter provides updates from the Bemidji State University, University of Minnesota Crookston, Missouri Western State University, and University of Central Missouri Student Chapters of The Wildlife Society. Photos highlighting Student Chapter activities are also included in the Section’s Spring 2019 newsletter. 

Bemidji State University Student Chapter of The Wildlife Society

The Bemidji State University Student Chapter of TWS took part in numerous activities this spring semester. Students participated in bobcat necropsies in Grand Rapids with the Minnesota DNR and took part in sharp-tailed grouse (Tympanuchus phasianellus), ruffed grouse (Bonasa umbellus), prairie chicken (Tympanuchus cupido) and sandhill crane (Grus canadensis) surveys at Agassiz and Glacial Ridge National Wildlife Refuges. Several students were at the annual brush cut up in Crookston, helping cut tamarack trees to improve sharp-tailed grouse habitat. Student chapter members also captured and banded purple martins (Progne subis) for monitoring purposes along Lake Bemidji, as well as with duck banding at Agassiz. The student chapter put up a wood duck box and several bluebird houses at a local Bemidji wildlife management area and helped the local DNR set harvest guidelines for the inner-city deer archery hunt by conducting deer spotlight surveys every October. Six student chapter members and a faculty member were able to attend The Wildlife Society’s annual conference in Cleveland, and they also competed in the Quiz Bowl at the conference. Thirteen students helped the DNR during deer season, removing lymph nodes from deer for CWD testing in north central Minnesota. A group of students went to Norris Camp and mist-netted chickadees, nuthatches and grosbeaks. Two student members attended the Midwest Fish and Wildlife Conference in Cleveland and presented their research on the water uptake capabilities of sphagnum moss. Seventeen students attended the Minnesota Chapter of TWS annual meeting and three presented their research.

University of Minnesota Crookston Student Chapter of The Wildlife Society

The University of Minnesota Crookston Student Chapter of TWS planned many opportunities for student chapter members to enhance their skills and experiences, develop their resume, meet other professionals, and, of course, have some fun along the way! Ten students took a Minnesota trapper’s education course taught by retired DNR Area Wildlife Manager Terry Wolfe. Seventeen students participated in the annual brush cut hosted by the Minnesota Sharp-tailed Grouse Society (MSGS) in an effort to restore habitat for sharp-tails and other prairie species. Students learned about grouse and habitat management from the event leaders, completed some hand-on brushland management, and as an added bonus, got a physical workout moving through the snow all day. Moreover, UMC brought the greatest number of students and won the coveted Golden Saw Award for the 6th year running. They sharpened their communication skills with a mammal identification demonstration and by answering questions about wildlife at a community “We Are Water” festival in March. In April, they completed surveys with the DNR for owls and goshawks in Beltrami Island State Forest and planted several thousand trees in the Chippewa National Forest. Student chapter members enhanced their networking and professional development skills at the annual meetings of the Minnesota Chapter of TWS as well as the MSGS Spring Fling at Lake Bronson State Park. For a bit of fun, students enjoyed a snowshoeing trip to Lake Itasca State Park and developed their curling skills at the Grand Forks Curling Club. The student chapter’s principle fundraising activity was cleaning a local hockey arena after events. Students are looking forward to the year-end picnic with the Natural Resources Club.

Missouri Western State University Student Chapter of The Wildlife Society
By Kaitlyn Atkins

The Missouri Western State University Student Chapter of TWS had great fall and spring semesters. At the start of the fall semester, the number of new members increased greatly. The student chapter was given the opportunity to assist several partners with events, including deer ageing with the Missouri Department of Conservation and invasive species control, seed collecting and monarch tagging with Losses Bluffs National Wildlife Refuge. The student chapter was also able to send several members to the Midwest Fish and Wildlife Conference, where they received the North Central Section of TWS’ Student Chapter of the Year award for 2018. Several student chapter members also attended the Missouri Chapter of TWS workshop.

University of Central Missouri Student Chapter of The Wildlife Society
By Tessa Coster and Chris Call

The University of Central Missouri Student Chapter of TWS took advantage of numerous opportunities and community events in 2019. In January, they had a faculty member from the University’s Career Services Center talk about how to work on and create a resume. In February, 12 student chapter members attended the Missouri Natural Resource Conference and had a great time listening to professional and student presentations. Several members benefited from the job fair held at the conference. In late February, two students attended a pond workshop hosted by a UCM Alum, William Casner, a Private Lands Conservationist for the Missouri Department of Conservation. A handful of students also attended a burn workshop at Blind Pony Hatchery in early March. The student chapter’s proudest accomplishment is five of their members participating in a service learning trip with the Konnarock Crew and spending a week of their summer on the Appalachian Trail performing trail maintenance.

Header Image: Ruffed grouse (Bonasa umbellus). ©David A. Mitchell