Educators gather for Soil Health Field Day at KBS

The following post is by Ava Garrison, graduate student in Jeffrey Conner's lab and Science Education and Outreach Fellow at the Kellogg Biological Station. Sarah Evans and Corinn Rutkoski use a rainfall simulator to show how different soil treatments can affect water runoff and groundwater. Educators from across Michigan gathered at KBS for the 2019 LTER Soil Health Field Day, which took place on Wednesday, September 11. The day began with the driving question: how can we as educators share soil health science with our students? The attendees, who were educators from all grade levels

Global change is triggering an identity switch in grasslands

Konza Prairie Biological Station in northeastern Kansas. Humans and animals alike depend on grasslands for survival. In addition to providing land for cattle and sheep to graze, grasslands can also store up to 30 percent of the world's carbon. Photo by Kim Komatsu, Smithsonian Environmental Research Center. Grasslands make up more than 40% of the world's ice-free land and have sustained humanity and thousands of other species for eons. In addition to providing food for cattle and sheep, grasslands are home to animals found nowhere else in the wild, such as the bison of North America's

New book delves into the lives of the world’s rarest butterflies

Conservation biologist Nick Haddad didn't set out to study rare butterflies. His undergraduate studies didn't focus on butterflies at all. Yet the plight of the St. Francis' Satyr, a butterfly so scarce that it's found in artillery ranges at a single military base in North Carolina, intrigued him and set in motion a decades-long search to find the world's rarest butterflies and determine how best to aid in their recovery. In his new book, "The Last Butterflies: A Scientist's Quest to Save a Rare and Vanishing Creature," Haddad chronicles the stories of six extremely rare

On Data and Reverie: A Farmer and Writer-in-Residence at the KBS LTER

Erin Schneider, farmer writer in residence at KBS. A blooming redbud tree flashed a profusion of pink outside the large windows in the W.K. Kellogg Biological Station’s Terrace Room. Inside, vases of freshly-picked plants spiffed up the small tables set around the room: milkweed, wood sorrel, garlic mustard, purple dead nettle, dame’s rocket, and motherwort. The bouquets were more than decoration; they were little collections of inspiration from a week spent exploring the lands, people and research at the W.K. Kellogg Biological Station. Self-described “people, plants and dirt-lover”

Learning to step out of my comfort zone at KBS

Kellogg Biological Station (KBS) 2018 undergraduate summer researcher, Selassie Lijelu, is a Forensic Chemistry major at the University of Saint Francis-Fort Wayne. She wrote about herKBS Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) project working with the Haddad Lab. The summer of 2018, I was selected to participate in the Michigan State University Kellogg Biological Station (KBS)Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program. When I accepted the offer, I was extremely nervous and had no idea what the next eleven weeks in Hickory Corners, Michigan would consist of. I was

Poco a poco : The little nopalito in a cornfield

Kellogg Biological Station (KBS) 2018 undergraduate summer researcher, Nicholas Vega Anguiano, is an undergraduate student at Humboldt State University. He wrote about his KBS Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) project working with Kate Glanville in the Robertson Lab. Anticipation and nervousness of my impending interview with a W.K. Kellogg Biological Station (KBS) graduate student, Kate Glanville, sent my body into a state of nerves. Throat tight, palms sweaty, and a million doubts running through my mind. Seven minutes until we were scheduled to meet, via a

My time as an REU: learning the research process

Kellogg Biological Station (KBS) 2018 undergraduate summer researcher, Audrey Hogenkamp, an Applied mathematics and biology dual major at Augustana College. She wrote about her KBS Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) project working with the Evans Lab. There are pages and pages that I could write about everything that I learned during my summer at W.K. Kellogg Biological Station (KBS). Each individual that I encountered had such an incredible passion for their work that I felt like I was constantly inundated with new knowledge—from dinner table conversations with my friends

Microbial Communities in Long Term Research: Reflections from a Field Season at KBS

Reid Longley is a PhD candidate in the MSU Department of Microbiology & Molecular Genetics. He is a member of the Bonito Lab. Reid wrote about his research at the KBS LTER, funded by a 2018 Summer Fellowships for Long-term Ecological Research.                   Performing my field research at the W.K. Kellogg Biological Station (KBS) this summer was the first time I had ever been exposed to work in agriculture. Before coming to Michigan State for my PhD studies, I had not thought much about the amount of science that goes into

To research or not to research? How I discovered my passion at KBS

KBS undergraduate summer researcher, Maiya Wimbley, is a student in the Eli Broad College of Business at Michigan State University. She wrote about her Undergraduate Research Apprentice (URA) project working with mentor and KBS scientist, Kate Glanville, in the Robertson lab. Posted on the door leading to the Robertson Lab was a sign that read “Research Area: Do Not Enter.” Upon reading the sign, I promptly turned around, certain I wasn’t allowed back there—they were doing real science, I was just visiting. I wandered around for a few

Waders half full, or half empty?

KBS 2018 undergraduate summer researcher Sharon Carpenter is a junior at Michigan State University. She wrote about her Undergraduate Research Assistant project working with mentor Dr. Sarah Fitzpatrick. Carpenter was funded by a URA award from the Kellogg Biological Station. Taking a quick photo after a long day of data collection “Do you remember when you fell into the pond with your waders on?” says Madison Miller, a lab technician in Sarah Fitzpatrick’s lab. As we laughed with tears in our eyes, I knew I found my story for this blog post. Yes, you might be reading and wondering what