Tuesday, August 27, 2013

IL DNR Forest Health Workshops for Greater Illinois - Updated Dates and Locations for 2013

*Please note new locations and dates.  The previous workshops to be held during the week of August 19th were cancelled and workshops have been rescheduled for the end of September. Please note that there is no longer a Springfield workshop, instead there is a workshop in Bloomington.

The 2013 Forest Health Workshops are designed for IDNR District Foresters, forest landowners, Walnut Council Association, Commercial Arborists, City Foresters, Public Works Directors and green industry professionals.

New for 2013 - Participants are welcome to bring insect and disease samples to workshop for diagnosis and management suggestions

  Topics covered:
  • Diagnostics using microscopes and hand-lenses
  • Hands-on samples and activities
  • Update on insect and diseases seen in 2013
  • Invasive species update and technical information – thousand cankers of black walnut, Asian longhorned beetle, gold-spotted oak borer, and more
  • 2012 Drought repercussions
  • EAB management survey results –what are municipalities doing to manage EAB – what’s working, cost efficiency, and chemical options
Registration fee includes refreshments, lunch, and workshop supplies Roughly 6.0 CEUs will be available for ISA Certified Arborists and 6.0 CFE for American Foresters.

Registration can be paid by credit card through The Morton Arboretum Registrar (630) 719-2468 to register, Monday-Friday 8:30-4:00.

Bloomington Workshop
September 20, 2013
McLean County Extension Office
402 N. Hershey Conference Room
20 spaces available Register by September 13

Geneseo Workshop
September 27, 2013
Izaak Walton League Lodge
22870 Illinois 82
30 spaces available
Register by September 20

Mt. Vernon Workshop
September 30, 2013
Veteran’s Park, South Room
800 South 27th Street
30 spaces available
Register by September 23

All workshops are $35
Run from 8 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Min. of 10 registrants required, preregistration required, at door payment accepted

Questions? Contact:

Fredric Miller, Ph.D.
Phone (815) 280-2740
E-mail: fmiller@jjc.edu
Stephanie Adams, M.S.
Phone (630) 719-7946
E-mail: sadams@mortonarb.org
Andi Dierich
Phone (630) 719-2110
Email: adierich@mortonarb.org

Monday, August 26, 2013

New Congressional Invasive Species Caucus Formed

Rep. Mike Thompson (D-CA) and Rep. Dan Benishek (R-MI) are co-chairing the newly formed bipartisan Congressional Invasive Species Caucus.

According to Rep. Thompson's website, the Caucus will serve to raise awareness about invasive species issues, support local communities who are bearing the brunt of this problem, and promote efforts to prevent and control the spread of invasive species. The Caucus will also provide opportunities for Members of Congress to meet with other policy makers, organizations and industry leaders that are working to prevent the spread of invasive species.

Press release from Rep. Thompson

National Invasive Species Management Plan

Getting Ahead of Invasive Species: The Morton Arboretum Restoration Forum

The Morton Arboretum Restoration Forum
Everyone who restores natural areas must grapple with invasive plant species, from Japanese stiltgrass to Oriental bittersweet to birdsfoot trefoil. The Morton Arboretum in Lisle, IL, will hold a two-day forum in September where restoration professionals and dedicated volunteer stewards from the Chicago region can learn and exchange practical information on weed management.

Friday, September 13 – Saturday, September 14, 2013
Thornhill Education Center at The Morton Arboretum
4100 Illinois Route 53, Lisle, IL 60532

Program: 9:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m.

Topics will include:
New invaders, their ecological impacts, and management practices
Site management strategies for tough invaders: Case studies and what really works
Management tips and tricks for our most challenging species
Networking and collaboration opportunities

Forum Speakers:

Chris Evans, Invasive Species Campaign of the Illinois Wildlife Action Plan
Bill Kleiman and Cody Considine, Nachusa Grasslands
Cathy McGlynn, Northern Illinois Invasive Plant Partnership
Joe Suchecki and Nick Fuller, Springbrook Prairie
Kurt Dreisilker and Mark Hochsprung, The Morton Arboretum
Geoff Zink and Kim Blaszczak, Integrated Lakes Management
Jason Zylka, Forest Preserve District of Will County

Arboretum Member: $55, Nonmember: $65, Student: $15 Event fee includes Arboretum admission, refreshments, lunch, and program materials.

Field excursions at:
Nachusa Grasslands
Springbrook Prairie
The Morton Arboretum

Visit mortonarb.org/restoration-forum for details. Register separately for field excursions.

Reserve your spot today or contact us for more information:
mortonarb.org/restoration-forum; Call: 630-719-2468; Email: registrar-ed@mortonarb.org

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Forest Service Scientists Identify Key Fungal Species that Help Explain Mysteries of White Nose Syndrome

Original article: HERE

MADISON, WI, July 25, 2013 - U.S. Forest Service researchers have identified what may be a key to unraveling some of the mysteries of White Nose Syndrome: the closest known non-disease causing relatives of the fungus that causes WNS. These fungi, many of them still without formal Latin names, live in bat hibernation sites and even directly on bats, but they do not cause the devastating disease that has killed millions of bats in the eastern United States. Researchers hope to use these fungi to understand why one fungus can be deadly to bats while its close relatives are benign.
The study by Andrew Minnis and Daniel Lindner, both with the U.S. Forest Service’s Northern Research Station in Madison, Wis., outlines research on the evolution of species related to the fungus causing WNS. The study is available online from the journal Fungal Biology.
“Identification of the closest known relatives of this fungus makes it possible to move forward with genetic work to examine the molecular toolbox this fungus uses to kill bats,” according to Lindner, a research plant pathologist. “Ultimately, we hope to use this information to be able to interrupt the ability of this fungus to cause disease”.
The study is an important step toward treating WNS, according to Mylea BaylessBat Conservation International’s director of conservation programs in the U.S. and Canada. “This research increases our confidence that this disease-causing fungus is, in fact, an invasive species,” Bayless said, “Its presence among bats in Europe, where it does not cause mass mortality, could suggest hope for bats suffering from this devastating wildlife disease. Time will tell.”
White Nose Syndrome was first observed in 2006 in a cave in Upstate New York. Since then, it has spread to 22 states in the United States and five Canadian provinces and has killed large numbers of hibernating bats, a problem resulting in substantial economic losses. A marked decline in bat populations in the eastern United States was documented in a study published last month in PLoS One by Sybill Amelon, a research biologist with the Forest Service in Columbus, Mo., and co-authors Thomas Ingersolland Brent Sewall. The study found cumulative declines in regional relative abundance by 2011 from peak levels were 71 percent for little brown bats, 34 percent for tricolored bat, 30 percent in the federally-listed endangered Indiana bat, and 31 percent for northern long-eared bats.
In 2009, researchers identified the culprit behind WNS as a member of the genus Geomyces, resulting in its name Geomyces destructans, or G. destructans. Minnis and Lindner generated DNA sequence data and found evidence supporting a shift in the genus to which the fungus belongs, resulting in a new name: Pseudogymnoascus destructans, or P. destructans.
“This research represents more than just a name change,” according to Bayless. “Understanding the evolutionary relationships between this fungus and its cousins in Europe and North America should help us narrow our search for solutions to WNS.”
The study is based on a foundation of collaborative research among the U.S. Forest Service, the USGS National Wildlife Health Center, and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, and is a continuation of pioneering research initiated by Canadian researchers at the University of Alberta and European researchers, including those at the Centraalbureau voor Schimmelcultures in The Netherlands.
“Collaboration is key to responding to problems as devastating as WNS,” said Michael T. Rains, director of the Northern Research Station. “We have come a long way since we first encountered WNS, in large part due to the cooperation among government agencies, universities and non-government organizations. For this study in particular, USGS and Fish & Wildlife Service partners played critical roles collecting the fungi used in these studies. Problems this large will not be solved without unprecedented cooperation, and this study is a great example of that.”

Monday, August 19, 2013

Southern Illinois - Invasive Plant and Forest Management Field Day

Saturday, September 14th, 2013
10:00am – 3:00pm at Trail of Tears State Forest

Event is Free with Lunch provided by The Great Boars of Fire (registration required)

Trail of Tears State Forest
White Barn
3240 State Forest Road
Jonesboro, IL 62952

Sponsored by NRCS, River to River CWMA, National Wild Turkey Federation, Shawnee RC&D   Learn about invasive plant identification, control techniques, forest management practices, and landowner assistance programs. This program would be beneficial to landowners, hunters, or anyone interested in learning more about conservation and management of forests in Southern Illinois.

Field Day Agenda

10:00-10:15 - Welcome and introductions
10:15-10:45 - Invasive Plant Control Techniques – Karla Gage, River to River CWMA
10:45-11:15 - Forest Management for Wildlife – John Burk, National Wild Turkey Federation
11:15-11:45 - Illinois Wildlife Action Plan, Forest Campaign – Tracy Boutelle Fidler, Wildlife Action Plan COA
11:45-12:15 - Landowner Assistance Programs – Ryan Pankau, Natural Resources Conservation Service
12:15-1:00 - Lunch – The Great Boars of Fire
1:00-3:00 - Field tour to view and discuss management techniques and invasive plant identification

Lunch is provided for free, but registration is required by Monday, September 9th. For registration information, directions or if you have any questions about the field day, please contact Karla Gage (618-998-5920, rtrcwma@gmail.com)

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Stewardship Network Webcast - Fall prep for spring invasives control work

A note from the Stewardship Network:
Join us for the FREE Stewardship Network Webcast Wednesday, August 14th, "Fall Preparations for Spring Invasives Control Work"
Presentation by: Chris Evans, Coordinator of the Invasives Species Campaign of the Illinois Wildlife Action Plan; and Lisa Brush, The Stewardship Network
Date: Wednesday, August 14, 2013
Time: 12 noon to 1pm Eastern
Place: Your Computer!
Click here to view webcast! 
(Link will become live day of webcast)
Stewardship, including invasive species management, is a year-round endeavor. Each season brings different challenges and new opportunities. Knowing the correct timing for conducting invasive species work can greatly increase efficiency and reduce costs. When you think of invasive species work for fall, you typically think of treating woody invasive plants. However, there are a lot of other tasks that need to be completed in preparation for spring work. In this webcast, we’ll cover some of the basic tasks that managers and stewards can do in the fall to prepare for next year’s invasive species work, including scouting, mapping, firebreak installation, equipment maintenance, and planning.
Chris Evans- Chris is the Coordinator of the Invasive Species Campaign of the Illinois Wildlife Action Plan.  This position involves working with partners across the state to implement the actions set forth in the Wildlife Action Plan to address invasive species in Illinois.  Chris has a Master's Degree in Forest Biology from Iowa State University and a Bachelor's Degree in Wildlife Biology from Murray State University.  Before working with the Wildlife Action Plan, Chris coordinated the River to River Cooperative Weed Management Area in southern Illinois and served as an Invasive Species and Natural Resource Specialist for the University of Georgia's Center for Invasive Species and Ecosystem Health.
Lisa Brush - Executive Director, The Stewardship Network. Lisa has worked in the environmental field in Michigan for the last fifteen years. She is currently the Executive Director of the Stewardship Network and has been involved with the Network since its inception more than 10 years ago. She has a wealth of experience helping non-scientific people understand scientific issues. For over nine years, as she has built and coordinated The Stewardship Network, she has emphasized effective and meaningful stakeholder involvement in developing and implementing all aspects of this program. She has a M.S. in Natural Resources from the University of Michigan and a B.A. (Science in Society) from Wesleyan University.

New Aquatic Invasive Plant Factsheets Available from the Midwest Invasive Plant Network

MIPN has put together several new aquatic invasive plant fact sheets.  Fact sheets for the plants listed on their Aquatic Invasive Plants in the Midwest Flyer are included.  Check them out on the Early Detection Rapid Response webpage!

Monday, August 5, 2013

Forest Health and Protection: Announcing 2013 Forest Health Workshops

**Update - The dates and locations for this series of workshops have recently been altered.  To see an updated list, go to: http://illinoisisam.blogspot.com/2013/08/il-dnr-forest-health-workshops-for.html

The 2013 Forest Health Workshops are designed for IDNR District Foresters, forest landowners, Walnut Council Association, Commercial Arborists, City Foresters, Public Works Directors and green industry professionals.

Topics covered:
  • Field diagnostics (Dress for the weather!)
  • Hands-on samples and activities
  • Insect and disease updates – Thousand cankers of black walnut, bur oak blight, Asian longhorned beetle, gold-spotted oak borer and more
  • IL DNR Forest Health and Protection program
  • Drought repercussions
  • Tree risk assessment

 Registration to each workshop is limited to the first 50 applicants Registration fee will include refreshments, lunch, and workshop supplies Roughly 6 CEUs will be available for ISA Certified Arborists. Registration can be paid by credit card through The Morton Arboretum Registrar (630) 719-2468 to register, Monday-Friday 8:30-4:00.


August 20, 2013
IL Dept. of Agriculture; Room 66, IL State Fairgrounds
8th St. x Sangamon Ave. Gate 11, Springfield, IL
8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
$25-registered by August 15; $35-registered after August 15

August 21, 2013
Veteran’s Park South Room
800 South 27th St., Mt. Vernon, IL
7:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
$25- registered by August 15; $35-registered after August 15

September 6, 2013
The Morton Arboretum
4100 Illinois Route 53, Lisle, IL
8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
$40-registered by August 20; $55-registered after August 20

September 27, 2013
Izaak Walton League Lodge
22870 Illinois 82, Geneseo, IL
8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
$25-registered by Sept. 10; $35-registered after Sept. 10

Questions? Contact:

Fredric Miller, Ph.D.
Phone (815) 280-2740
E-mail: fmiller@jjc.edu 


Stephanie Adams, M.S.
Phone (630) 719-7946
E-mail: sadams@mortonarb.org