Milwaukee Urban Ecology Blog

Written by Michelle Milford
Wednesday, 07 September 2022
What is Urban Nature?  Urban Ecology is based on the radical idea that nature is everywhere. And, the Center works by engaging communities in restoring critical local ecologies - parks, open spaces, river systems, and more - right where they live. These natural spaces tucked amongst towering buildings and city streets are what we call “Urban Nature”.
Written by Urban Ecology Center
Friday, 26 August 2022
We are so fortunate to have had Kim Forbeck as the Manager of Land Stewardship for 22 years! Today she is officially retiring and we wish her the very best on her new adventures. Kim has guided our Land Stewardship department as a tireless advocate for green spaces in Milwaukee. Due to her leadership, the UEC has provided a variety of ecologically diverse and resilient spaces for all to enjoy. The biodiversity and access to three distinct public greenspaces within the city of Milwaukee have been genuinely transformed, including two conversions from brownfield rubble, the enhancement of a degraded forest, and the evolution from sterile trees and lawn to an amazing diverse habitat in the middle of the city.
Written by Clare Eigenbrode
Wednesday, 03 August 2022
Just after sundown on a recent July evening, I squinted into the blue silhouettes of maple and ash trees at the Urban Ecology Center’s Washington Park branch, where our Research and Community Science Department’s monitoring equipment told us hoary bats (Lasiurus cinereus) and eastern red bats (Lasiurus borealis) were swooping for insects. Officially, I was there to help conduct one of our bat monitoring surveys, but soon I found myself gazing not into the inscrutable night sky but at the lampposts that lined our path below the canopy.
Written by Urban Ecology Center
Monday, 11 July 2022
Anyone who lives or has lived in South Eastern Wisconsin can attest that Milwaukee in the summer is a place where everyone and everything thrives. At the Urban Ecology Center, the same applies. Neighborhood Engagement, Community Programs, Summer Camps, Land Stewardship, and many other departments at UEC are in full bloom. The Center needs extra hands during the summer months which is where the help of all the summer interns come into play. With the new excitement and energy that the summer interns bring to UEC, let’s dive into a few of their stories.
Written by Urban Ecology Center
Thursday, 07 July 2022
Local artist Shelly Rosenquist will display her art exhibit 'Eco Stars' at the Urban Ecology Center Menomonee Valley later this July. Everyone is welcome to the opening reception on July 22 from 5-7 pm.  Shelly Rosenquist says, “My subject matter ranges from what influences me in our world, but I tend to take much of my inspiration from nature and the organic. I believe that in our hectic human existence, we have strayed from what makes this world a beautiful place. I like to use my work as a tool to remind people to look around them, breathe the air, to appreciate the detail and miracles of nature. I express myself by taking the neglected and twisting it into something…
Written by Urban Ecology Center
Wednesday, 15 June 2022
People are finding many ways to celebrate this warm (maybe a little too warm?) summer. The one that has caught my attention the most is fireworks. As the night skies filled with flashing bright colors and a resounding loud noise, I’ve found myself considering the effects of fireworks on our urban environment from an ecological perspective. Fireworks affect all of us in Milwaukee in more ways than you might imagine.
Written by Augie Rodenbeck
Wednesday, 01 June 2022
Have you always wanted to try an outdoor adventure like canoeing, but did not know where to start? Join Urban Ecology Center’s Community Programs team as we share in the delights of connecting to nature and each other! Inexperience is not a barrier to programming: we welcome newcomers to urban adventuring. Come with your interest, curiosities, and passions. We want to hear about what led you here, what you are hesitant about, and how we can work together to broaden your experiences and have fun doing it! The neighborhoods and communities that our Centers operate in are why we love what we do. 
Written by Olivia Raasch
Friday, 13 May 2022
The Outdoor Leader program at the Urban Ecology Center allows youth to get outside, learn about green careers, make friends, and get paid! It is our goal to provide high school students the resources and guidance to make connections within themselves, their communities, and nature. Outdoor Leaders are a part of our Green Career Pathway program, which engages people of all ages, backgrounds, and interests in studies of ecology, volunteerism, environmental justice, and much more.
Written by Urban Ecology Center
Tuesday, 26 April 2022
“I enjoy supporting an organization that brings nature to the city!” Grace Fuhr said of her UEC membership. “Our family lives in Riverwest and we often take walks along the Milwaukee River. Having the UEC and Milwaukee Rotary Centennial Arboretum across the river is an amazing asset to our community.”
Written by Davita Flowers-Shanklin
Monday, 11 April 2022
Spring in Wisconsin is the time of year when you can have warm, sunny weather one day, and snow the next. For the last few years, I have come to expect snow leading up to Earth Day, April 22nd. I often wonder why Sen. Gaylord Nelson, who was from Wisconsin, would pick such an unpredictable time to celebrate the earth. But then I remember that it doesn’t really matter what the weather is, Earth day is a day for us to connect with the earth, however, it is presenting that day. Spring is about change and growth, and sometimes that means snow in April.


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