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Milwaukee Urban Ecology Blog

Written by Glenna Holstein
Friday, 10 May 2013
I cannot WAIT for summer in the Menomonee Valley!  Twittering birds, fish splashing in the river, beautiful blossoming prairie plants, and for the first time ever…Urban Ecology Center summer campers!  Do you have any children in your life?  There is a whole world of wonder here waiting for kiddos to come enjoy it—all you need to do is sign them up! There are endless reasons why I think summer camp in the Menomonee Valley is an amazing opportunity for kids, but here are my top 3:
Written by Omar Bonilla-Ortiz
Wednesday, 08 May 2013
The season of cycling is upon us.  Here are a few ideas for places to ride, both in and out of the city, for cyclists of all experience levels.   “Melancholy is incompatible with bicycling.”  - James E. Starrs
Written by Urban Ecology Center
Tuesday, 07 May 2013
In honor of Bike to Work Week, May 13th-18th, we thought we’d offer some tips from our own bike-commuting experts! Many of our staff members bike to work year-round (read about our Eco-Buck program here) and have offered bike commuting tips on gear, all weather riding, safety, hauling stuff and bike security for both novice and expert bikers alike!
Written by Dan Graves
Monday, 06 May 2013
Finally the weather has started to change for the better. Bloodroot, trout lily and other spring ephemerals are beginning to blossom. It is also the time of year when all gardeners are itchin’ to get their hands dirty.  Preparing your gardening space is the number one priority right now. In this blog post, I’ll let you know what I do to prepare my beds in early spring for plant success!
Written by Urban Ecology Center
Monday, 06 May 2013
The Center's program is really hopping (and swimming and wriggling and flying)! We are monitoring everything from mammals to frogs to moths. We need you! If you are interested in becoming a community scientist and helping us collect data in the park or analyze that data, please attend one of the monitoring workshops listed below. All of the workshops are free and are held at our Riverside Park branch.
Written by Joel Springsteen
Sunday, 05 May 2013
The buttercup family (ranunculacea) has 1,700 species distributed around the world with about 70 occuring in Wisconsin. Some of the more familiar species include wild columbine (Aquilegia canadensis), virgin's bower (Clematis virginiana), marsh marigold (Caltha palustris), and American pasque flower (Anemone patens L. var. multifida). Early meadowrue (Thalictrum dioicum) is one member of the family blooming in the woods this time of year. With graceful grayish-green fern-like foliage, and dainty, tassel-like flowers, this one is worth finding on a spring walk.  
Written by Anne Reis
Friday, 03 May 2013
Wisconsin’s hibernating bat species (cave bats) are in danger of contracting a devastating disease called white-nose syndrome (WNS). This disease, caused by the fungus Geomyces destructans, has decimated populations of cave bats in the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic and Southeast US. Over six million bats have died since the initial detection in New York in 2006, and the disease has spread to 22 states and 5 Canadian provinces. 
Written by Glenna Holstein
Friday, 03 May 2013
If you walk into the Menomonee Valley branch on a Wednesday evening, you might think you’ve stumbled upon a party — resonant beats and fast moving lyrics emanate from the Valley Room, along with the sound of voices and moving feet. But what’s going on is more than a party: it’s a hip-hop class that teaches movement, confidence and teamwork. The class is being offered free of charge at the Center through a partnership with Above the Clouds, a non-profit, faith-based creative arts program dedicated to bringing art experiences to children in marginalized communities in Milwaukee.
Written by Matt Flower
Thursday, 02 May 2013
Pssst...parents. I have a brilliant plan! Don't tell your kids, but I'm leading a Summer Camp for Parents. Year after year, I have parents and adults telling me how lucky I am to have a job that’s so much fun. They wail and complain, "Why should my kids be the ONLY ones in the family to have all the fun?", "Why should they be the ONLY ones who get to learn, play, exercise and explore?" So this year we're gonna have some fun - just us adults!
Written by Chad Thomack
Wednesday, 01 May 2013
May day, May day… that is right, it is May 1st; the first day of canoe and kayak lending at the Urban Ecology Center. We are fully prepared at all three branches for people to borrow equipment. For those early bird paddlers, here are some recommendations of my favorite places to canoe on the Milwaukee River and beyond.

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