Friday May 17

Friday Pre-Conference Sessions    

8 a.m. - 5 p.m. - AIS Detectors Core Course - Fair Hills Resort - The Perch (Registration for this session is conducted through Extension's Aquatic Invasive Species program.)

4:45 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. 

Festival of Birds Field Trip: Tamarac National Wildlife Refuge (SOLD OUT)

Festival of Birds Field Trip: Wannigan Regional Park & Ike Fisher Farm  (SOLD OUT)

1-4 p.m. Sessions

Preconference Field Trip: Greenwater Lake Scientific & Natural Area

 

Description:


Visit a large SNA with a unique, very clear undeveloped lake, Greenwater Lake SNA! Come along to explore this SNA surrounding Greenwater Lake in northeastern Becker County. Help us celebrate 40 years of protecting a diversity of plant communities here as well as the entire shoreline of the 77-acre Greenwater Lake. The North Country National Scenic Trail provides a pleasant way to explore the SNA as we search for a variety of springtime wildflowers and birds. Bring those field guides and binoculars so you can document what you see on iNaturalist and/or eBird.


Preconference Field Trip: Lakes Area Watershed Tour – Phosphorus, Flowers, and Flow 

Lakes Area Watershed Tour – Phosphorus, Flowers, and Flow 


Description:

Join us on a tour of some of the projects the Pelican River Watershed has completed in and around the Detroit Lakes area. 

Rice Lake Wetlands Restoration – Two decades of water quality monitoring identified the upstream Rice Lake Wetland as a primary contributor of “legacy” phosphorus loading to Big Detroit Lake.  The project water quality goal is to decrease the phosphorus release by 40-60%. 

The project includes two phases of stabilization and increasing the water levels.  Phase I, the “upper Structure” is a rock-ripple spill way to allow for migration of fish and other aquatic species. This structure completed construction in 2022.

Phase II, the “lower structure,” has been approved for funding and will commence soon.  This project was the result of a partnership between the Pelican River Watershed District, BWSR, Clean Water Legacy Funding, MPCA, MN DNR and the City of Detroit Lakes.

Highway 10 Scenic Overlook – In 2008, a multiagency group in Detroit Lakes set a goal of restoring the shoreline on the north end of Detroit Lakes.  The Detroit Lake Overlook project removed 1,200 feet of riprap and planted over 14,000 native plants along 1,800 feet of shoreline.  PRWD continues to monitor and assist the City of Detroit Lakes with the maintenance and upkeep of this project.  The Overlook is a successful example of the beauty and enhancement of natural vegetation on a lake shore.

This project was the result of a partnership between the Pelican River Watershed District, MNDOT, Becker County SWCD, MN Conservation Corps, Lake Detroiters Association, MN DNR, the City of Detroit Lakes, and the Becker County Master Gardeners.

Wastewater Treatment Plant

https://www.tpomag.com/online_exclusives/2022/04/video-minnesota-city-solves-strict-nutrient-regulations-at-new-facility

The City of Detroit Lakes, MN completed a new wastewater treatment facility in 2021.  To protect the water quality of Lake St. Clair, the design of the new facility had to reduce nutrient effluent by 94% over the previous facility’s capacity.   The new facility accommodates 2.2 million gallons of wastewater per day while meeting or exceeding Phosphorus limits.

Presenters:



Preconference Pontoon Tour: The Naturalist's Guide to All Things Loony

Presenters:  Maddi Nistler and Natasha Bartolotta

Description:  We’re all a little loony for Minnesota’s state bird! Whether you only know Common Loons by their iconic calls, or you are a long time loon watcher, these charismatic birds will never stop surprising you. This session will include a tour of Pelican Lake on Fair Hills Resort’s boat cruise to give you an up close and personal introduction to the physical and behavioral characteristics that make Common Loons unique. For those curious about loon related citizen science and volunteer opportunities, we will also discuss ways that you can be an advocate for loons in Minnesota.  

Level of activity:  A little bit active

Audience Experience Level: Beginner, Intermediate

Presenter biographies:  

Preconference Onsite Workshop: Bird and Mammal Specimen Prep with the Bell Museum


Description:  Join Bell Museum curators in the process of preparing mammal & bird specimens. This session will include ID and live dissections in order to collect data, preserve samples, and produce specimens for the Bell Museum natural history collections. 

Preconference Onsite Workshop: Fish Specimen Prep with the Bell Museum

Description: Join Bell Museum curators in the process of preparing fish specimens. This session will include ID and live dissections in order to collect data, preserve samples, and produce specimens for the Bell Museum natural history collections. 

Conference Begins:

5:00 p.m. - Dinner and Plenary Session: Al Batt presents Seeing a Bird can Change a Life

7:30 p.m. - 9:00 p.m. - Social activities and cash bar