Jim Doherty (PhD, Botany) presents at Science Day 2014

Jim Doherty (PhD, Botany) presents at Science Day 2014

Science Day: An Annual Research Symposium

Every year, we celebrate UW student research at the Arboretum by hosting presentations that help staff understand and manage Arboretum natural resources. Initiated in 2001 with six student posters and a few staff in the McKay Center basement, this event now fills the new Visitor Center auditorium and serves both professionals and the public through student talks and posters, plus a plenary speech by an invited guest. Science Day is free and open to the public.

The 2018 Science Day will be February 15, from 9 to 11:30 a.m. The symposium on current research at the Arboretum includes talks, a keynote address, and posters. The event is free and open to the public. Presenters and topics are listed below; abstracts are available as a download in the left sidebar.

2018 Talks

Is it spring yet? Tree and shrub response to an extreme warm winter event
Laura Ladwig, Department of Integrative Biology

To better understand the impacts of extreme events, we assessed bud break of many woody species following an extreme warm event (February 17–22, 2017, the warmest and longest winter climate event in the 40-year record) in Longenecker Horticultural Gardens.

The phenology of snow
Kim Thompson, Department of Forest and Wildlife Ecology

Understanding the phenology of the subnivial refuge—the timing of its establishment, maintenance, and disintegration—is important for characterizing the current conditions to which species are exposed and for predicting future exposure.

Citizen science for invasive species monitoring: Madison’s first citywide jumping worm survey
Carly Ziter, Department of Integrative Biology

We conducted Madison’s first citywide jumping worm survey as a citizen science initiative. The overarching goal was to get a first assessment of the distribution and abundance of jumping worms in the Madison metro area.

Lessons in integrated tick management
Jordan Mandli, Department of Entomology, and Scott Larson, Midwest Center of Excellence for Vector-borne Disease

Observations from four years of studying landscape manipulation and host-targeted acaricides as possible treatment for reducing tick density and potential Lyme disease transmission.

Keynote: The art and science of using tree-rings to understand Wisconsin history
Jed Meunier, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources

Tree rings provide detailed, site-specific history that can sharpen understanding of historical systems and help guide use of fire as a conservation and management tool. Tree rings are also an education tool that can demystify seemingly complex ecological problems and provide new ways of understanding complex issues.

2018 Posters

The role of burn seasonality, fire temperature, and residence time in controlling woody invasive plants
Nicholas Bargren, Edgewood College Department of Biology

How seasonality, fire temperature, and fire residence time interact to influence stem damage and resprouting of woody shrub and tree species that are often targeted by prescribed fire treatments in Wisconsin.

Uncovering the secret life of the Amynthas earthworm cocoon
Marie Johnston, UW–Madison Department of Soil Science

This research looks at jumping worm cocoon abundance when reared in the laboratory, and testing temperature tolerance of cocoons to learn about potential control methods.

Effects of invasive jumping earthworms on sugar maple hydraulics at the UW–Madison Arboretum
Kim O’Keefe, UW–Madison Department of Botany

Earthworms degrade soil organic matter and consequently reduce the capacity of the soil to retain water, and invasive earthworms may indirectly induce water stress in trees and reduce their ability to move water. We assessed the impacts of Asian jumping earthworms on sugar maple water-use.

Impact of Asian jumping worms (Amynthas spp.) on soil aggregate size and stability
Marie Johnston, UW–Madison Department of Soil Science

Jumping worms change the aggregate structure of the ground surface with visible granularity. We investigated the rate at which these different species affect soil aggregate size and water stability over time and in relation to each other.

The presence and disappearance of Cypripedium candidum in the southeast glacial plains of Wisconsin
Andrea Weissgerber, Department of Landscape Architecture

White lady’s-slipper orchids were once prevalent in southern Wisconsin. However, populations have experienced rapid decline due to habitat loss and the orchid is now a state threatened species. This study investigates the biotic and abiotic factors that influence its presence and disappearance.