Milwaukee Urban Ecology Blog

Written by Erick Anderson
Tuesday, 18 December 2012
"Uh uh. We ain’t going. We wanna go to gym!” What a way to start a class. We thought they’d be happy to see us. After all we were about to take them away from school to play and learn in the snow (and even slip in a little sledding). Who wouldn’t want to do that? This class, apparently. In fact, when we showed up at their room and asked if they were going on a field trip, they tried to convince us we were in the wrong room! Things did not start well, but we were confident that we could corral these seventh grade stallions.
Written by Willie Karidis
Tuesday, 18 December 2012
“Taking this trip to Alaska was the best thing that I’d ever done for myself.” - Mia Kuether, participant, 2012 Great Alaska Adventure “From the famous owl’s nest from the movie Into The Wild, to swimming moose, a lonely grizzly, beaver entering his mansion, magnificent clear view of Denali, outstanding meals, our naturalist Nan’s wisdom, delightful people and so much more in one was awesome!” - Ellen Boettcher and Pat Cochran, participants, 2012 Great Alaska Adventure This past September my wife Christine and I led 45 Urban Ecology Center members to our former home and showed them a slice of what makes Alaska magical. It was so much fun, we are doing it again!
Written by Alejandra Jiménez Marván
Tuesday, 18 December 2012
No matter how we dropped it on the cup of water, the needle kept pointing north. “Isn’t it awesome? Would you have imagined that we would be able to create a handmade compass by magnetizing a simple sewing needle?” I needed no other evaluation but the students’ amazed faces to realize that our class was pointing in the right direction, too. Had I not learned about electricity and magnetism in a fun and interactive way as a child, I would not have been so successful with that class.
Written by Beth Heller
Monday, 17 December 2012
Finding meaningful, inspiring stories of impactful corporate leadership in environmental sustainability for many may seem like a fantasy. From my experience, I know this kind of leadership is not only alive and well in our business community but also essential to our collective future. Forward thinking corporate leaders and employees use their ingenuity to think beyond the bottom line of the current quarter and plan for the future. This kind of leadership and the thinking that it is built upon is possible and it’s game changing.
Written by Ken Leinbach
Sunday, 16 December 2012
In May I’ll have been on this planet for half of a century. Seems like that should be enough time to have learned a thing or two, don’t you think? While I can’t claim extraordinary brilliance or wisdom, there are a few things I have figured out and, perhaps in part because of my graying hair, people on occasion actually seem to listen to me! I don’t expect you to fall into this category, but I hope you will at least give my words some consideration. 
Written by Jennifer Callaghan
Thursday, 13 December 2012
The Mink (Mustela vison) is a beautiful native Wisconsin animal with lusterous, thick fur. It often has prominent white spots underneath its chin giving it the look of a milk mustache. This round-eared, tubular-shaped mammal has partially webbed toes suitable to its semi-aquatic lifestyle. It is larger than most members of Mustela, similar in size to a marten. Unlike other mustelids however, it does not turn white in the winter. It retains its magnificent dark coat throughout the year and is often easily spotted along streams and ponds in the winter against the stark white backdrop of snowcover.  
Written by Tim Vargo
Wednesday, 12 December 2012
We’re prescribing outdoor activities to help you connect to nature in Milwaukee! Check out Episode 3 of our Nature Prescriptions video series with Tim Vargo, Manager of Research and Community Science, where he suggests cold weather birding.
Written by Jamie Ferschinger
Wednesday, 12 December 2012
The alarm goes off at 6:35 a.m. It is morning, but it sure seems like it is still night.  I lay in bed a few minutes longer convincing myself that my alarm clock is correct and that the time registering on the clock was not magically changed by wily elves while I was sleeping.  It is not this hard to get up in summer. Sun, where are you!? When the internal dialog finally concludes, I roll out of bed to face the day…and my dog who is ready for a run.
Written by Urban Ecology Center
Wednesday, 05 December 2012
We believe that time spent in nature is an important part of a healthy lifestyle for people of all ages. Check out our "Healing Nature" video below to see why it is especially important for today's youth. Learn more about the importance of connecting to nature on our Healing Nature page  
Written by Jamie Ferschinger
Friday, 30 November 2012
We’re prescribing outdoor activities to help you connect to nature in Milwaukee! Check out Episode 2 of our Nature Prescriptions video series with Jamie Ferschinger, Riverside Park Branch Manager, where she suggests bundling up and relaxing outside.

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