Affiliated Events

Rock River Basin April Events Updates (PDF)

Rock River Basin April 2017 Update

The Rock River Update is a listing of events and other items of interest for people in and around the Rock River Basin of Wisconsin. The update is available online at the beginning of each month. Inclusion is not an endorsement of a program, publication or website.


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Rock River Coalition (RRC) Events
April 26 Rock River Coalition Board Meeting: 5:15-7:15 pm, Rm 12 at UW-Extension office, Jefferson, WI.

Please confirm time and location prior to meeting.


June 3 Rock River National Water Trail Grand Opening Celebration:  9:00 am. Help celebrate the trails opening and bring awareness to the great recreational assets here in Wisconsin. Paddle the Rock River from Kaul Park to Kanow Park in Northeastern Jefferson County, which will be roughly 5.5 miles and take an estimated 2-3 hrs.  Doyle’s Dogs will have a food truck at the take-out. Rock River Coalition will have information regarding the organization and citizen stream monitoring program. More info will be coming soon on webpage or call at 920-674-7260.


Become A Stream Steward: Volunteer to Monitor Stream Health!

Looking for a way to take action to protect streams in the Rock River Basin? Become a citizen stream monitor with the Rock River Coalition (RRC). No prior skills are necessary. Only a few hours each month are required. From April to October, our citizen stream monitors collect data vital to understanding the health of our streams across the Rock River Basin. Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and various Cunty Land and Water Conservation Departments will use the data to better understand watershed protection and restoration needs.

Sign up for a workshop today. At these workshops you will learn how to measure water clarity, stream temperature, dissolved oxygen, and how to assess stream health by examining aquatic insects. Equipment provided – just bring a towel, waders or wear shoes with toe protection that can be worn in the water. Pre-Registration Required. Spaces fill quickly so register today!


2017 Training Opportunities

Saturday, April 29, 2017 (9:00 am-2:30 pm)

Location: Waunakee Village Center, Waunakee

Facilitators: Nancy Sheehan, RRC Stream Monitoring Program Coordinator, and Kyna North, Program Coordinator, Waunakee Village Center


Saturday, May 6, 2017 (9:00 am-2:30 pm)

Location: Amundson Center, Cambridge

Facilitators: Nancy Sheehan, RRC Stream Monitoring Program Coordinator, and Patricia Cicero, Water Resource Management Specialist, Jefferson Co. Land & Water Cons. Dept.


Saturday, May 6, 2017 (9:00 am-3:00 pm)

Location: UW-Waukesha Field Station, Oconomowoc

Facilitator: Jayne Jenks, Waukesha County Parks and Land Use Dept.


Saturday, May 20, 2017 (9:30 am-3:30 pm)

Location: Turtle Creek Parkway Facility, Clinton

Facilitators: Nancy Sheehan, RRC Stream Monitoring Program Coordinator, Anne Miller,

Conservation Specialist, Rock Co. Land Cons. Dept., David Hoffman, Community

Coordinator, Rock County Parks, and Lisie Kitchel, Conservation Biologist, Mussel Monitoring

Program, WDNR.  This workshop will also feature mussel monitoring!


Saturday, June 10, 2017 (9:30am-3:00pm)

Location: March Haven Nature Center, Waupun

Facilitators: Nancy Sheehan, RRC Stream Monitoring Program Coordinator, Amanda Perdzock, AIS Program Director, River Alliance of Wisconsin, and Jesse Weinzinger, Conservation Biologist, Mussel Monitoring Program, WDNR.  This workshop will also feature mussel monitoring and aquatic invasive species monitoring.


For more information go to:

Rock River Coalition, Citizen Stream Monitoring:

Water Action Volunteers Program:

Waukesha County, Citizen Stream Monitoring Program:


Natural Resource Calendar of Events

4th Annual Webinar Series:  Wisconsin First Detector Network (WIFDN):  Fridays, noon-1:30 pm.  FREE webinars; open to all interested participants.  See schedule below and register here. Visit website or learn more:, 608-262-9570


April 7th Passengers vs. Drivers:  Explore the ideas of invasive species acting as drivers or passengers of ecosystem change with Don Waller (UW-Madison) and Mike Siefkes (Great Lakes Fishery Commission).


April 21st Take Action! In addition to learning how to use the GLEDN app to report invasive species, learn about statewide Phragmites efforts from Jason Granberg (DNR) and purple loosestrife efforts in Washington County from Bradley Steckart (Washington Co. Land & Water Conservation Div.)


May 5th Citizen Science and Volunteer Opportunities:  Learn about impacts of citizen scientists from Alycia Crall (National Ecological Observatory Network), as well as volunteer opportunities from Art Wagner (USDA-APHIS-PPQ), Amanda Perdzock (River Alliance of Wisconsin), and Niels Jorgensen (UW-Madison).

Apr 5 Update the Dane County Parks and Open Space Plan:  7:00 pm. Village of Cottage Grove Village Hall, 221 E. Cottage Grove Rd, Cottage Grove, WI. Join a public information meeting to kick off the planning processInfo: Dane County Parks Website.

Apr 5-7 Minding Our Waters:  2017 Wisconsin Lakes Partnership Convention & Water Action Volunteers Symposium:  Holiday Inn & Convention Center, Stevens Point, WI.

WAV Symposium information:


Apr 10 DNR Spring Wildlife and Fisheries Proposed Rules Hearings and Annual Conservation Congress County Meetings:  7:00 pm. 72 public hearings will be held to provide individuals interested in natural resources management an opportunity to provide input by non-binding vote and testimony.

Consultants’ Day 2017: Environmental consultants, developers, local government officials and anyone interested in more technical aspects of contaminated land cleanup are encouraged to attend. Registration. Space limited at both events. Questions: Mick Skwarok 608-266-9263.

Apr 12 Stevens Point Holiday Inn Convention Center, WI

Apr 20 Country Springs Conference Center, Pewaukee, WI


Apr 22 Going Bats on Earth Day:  1:30-2:30 pm. Welty Environmental Center, 1201 Big Hill Court, Beloit, WI, 608-362-6212. Celebrate Earth Day by joining Jennifer Redell, bat biologist/cave & mine specialist with the WI DNR’s Bat Program, for an hour devoted to nightlife! $1 suggested donation.


May 7 Bird and Nature Walk:  1:30-3:00 pm. Cherokee Marsh Conservation Park, Madison, WI (map).  Free, family-friendly bird and nature walk. Sponsored by Madison Parks, the Friends of Cherokee Marsh and Madison Audubon Society.


May 7 Save Our Lakes Breakfast:  7:00 – 9:15 am.  Monona Terrace Community and Convention Center, 1 John Nolen Dr
Madison. Join Clean Lakes Alliance as we celebrate and assess the past year and launch new programs and initiatives for the year ahead. Presentations include the State of the Lakes Annual Report and our annual Save Our Lakes video series.   + Google Map.  $100.

May 8-11 2017 River Rally:  Hosted by River Network, Grand Rapids, Michigan. A national conference that focuses on education, inspiration and celebration within the river and watershed community

May 12-15 20th Annual Bird Festival:  Horicon Marsh Education and Visitor Center, Horicon, WI.  Hosted by Horicon Marsh Bird Club, bird enthusiasts can experience the sights, sounds and natural beauty of birds in peak spring migration. Contact: Liz Herzmann, DNR wildlife conservation educator, 920-387-7893.

May 20 Family Day & Leopold Center Open House:  12:00 noon-4:00 pm. The Leopold Center, Baraboo, WI. 608-355-0279. A free, family-friendly event with activities for kids and families including hikes, live reptiles, hayrides, watercolor painting and more! Visit Leopold Shack.

May 20 4th Annual Wildflowers for Wildlife: 9:00 am-1:00 pm. Horicon National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center (Hwy Z).

A native plant sale includes displays and consultants. Native landscape demonstration tours between 10:00 am-1:00 pm, Native plants are available for pre-order until April 14. Forms and info: or 920-387-7893.


May 20 Bats of Wisconsin:  6:30 – 7:30 pm.  Sandhill Wildlife Area Babcock, WI Learn about the natural history and basic biology of bats, echolocation and current threats to the population. Meet live bats face-to-face.  All proceeds from the $10 fee go towards bat conservation. Register by May 10.


UW-Milwaukee Field Station Summer Courses:  (Click here to register ) Workshop fee: $105. Available for 1.4 CEU. (Not offered for college credit)

June 2-3 –      Introduction to the Algae

June 12-17  – Vegetation of Wisconsin

June 16-17  –  Sedges Identification and Ecology

July  14-15  –  Wildlife Inventory and Monitoring,

July  28-29  –  Aquatic Invertebrates

August 4-5  –  Grasses:  Identification and Ecology

Aug 18-19   –  Aquatic Vascular Plants:  Identification and Ecology

Jun 16-18 28th Annual Energy Fair:  Midwest Renewable Energy Association, (MREA), Custer, WI.

Jun 22-24 2017 Building a Land Ethic Conference – Bridging the Urban-Rural Divide:  University of Wisconsin-Baraboo/Sauk County, Baraboo, WI.  Early bird registration open through April 21.


Grants/Awards/Contests (K-12 entries are in the K-12 section below)

USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is seeking applications from Wisconsin landowners for its premiere wetland restoration program, the Wetlands Reserve Easement (WRE). Applications are accepted year-round for funding.  Contact your local USDA NRCS Service Center for more information, visit or 608-662-4422 ext. 252,


K-12 Teachers and Students

The Water Cycle: The NRCS water cycle poster is back by popular demand.

Apr 22 Celebration of Excellence in Environmental Education:  Lussier Family Heritage Center, Madison, WI. Event will include tapas-style dinner, a silent auction, and a recognition ceremony. Event proceeds will support future environmental awards and education programs.

Apr 22 Library STEM: Biology of Rose Lake:  10:00-11:00 am. Dorothy Carnes Shelter, Ft. Atkinson, WI. The Friends of Rose Lake will introduce students to water, plant, and animal ecosystems of this special Jefferson County Park.  A special prize is offered to Ft. Atkinson Regional Science Fair participants who work on a project related to biology.  920-563-7774.

May 4 LEP Educator Workshop: Monona, WI 4:30-8:30 pm. Hands-on training  featuring the NEW 2016 Curriculum Guide. Open to all environmental educators, formal and non-formal, and those interested in teaching others about conservation, nature, and instilling a “land ethic”. $35 includes a light supper.

Jun 26-29 or July 17-20 Intro to Field Investigations- Summer Teacher Workshop:  For 4th-8th grade teachers.   $180/person. Includes meals, lodging, linens, resources and instruction. Space limited. More information: 745-479-6456, ext.232 or register on line:



Stream Monitoring News, Water Action Volunteers – January 2017


Connecting People to Their Public Lands 2016: The ways the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) engages youth and adults with opportunities to have fun in outdoors, learn about science and careers, and volunteer or work as stewards of our treasured landscapes and resources. Price: $14


Wisconsin amphibian and reptile field guides:  Bring these little field guides on your next outdoor adventure to identify any frog, snake or turtle you may see along the way. All proceeds from sales of these field guides goes to reprinting them and to educational materials. Order your field guides today


Waters of Wisconsin Shifting Currents:  The State of Wisconsin’s Waters in 2016:



Make Sure You Are Prepared for EAB:  Recently, Iowa DNR conducted a survey of its community foresters to understand preparedness for ash mortality from EAB in their communities. No communities surveyed contain private land owners that were prepared for the increased ash mortality. View the survey to see other results and barriers to EAB preparation.


Wildfire and your Woodland:


Purple loosestrife biocontrol:  See how you can help raise special beetles to feast on this plant and protect wetlands.


An Ancient Tool Holds Promise for Modern Water Problems: Researchers have developed a tool to assess the potential of rainwater harvesting throughout the United States. Columbia Water Center |March 22, 2017


Changes and Choices in the Yahara:  A mini-documentary series that showcases the major research implications from the UW-Madison Water Sustainability and Climate project, a five-year research endeavor funded by the National Science Foundation.
Reduce Your Water Footprint:  The rainwater that falls from your roof after a storm could play an important role

in protecting our country’s rivers and streams. Learn how to reduce your water footprint with a rain barrel.


Employment Opportunities

Natural Resources, Department of Recreational Safety Warden Supervisor – Project Position. Job Announcement Code(s): 17-00692. Statewide Full-time 40 hrs/week.  Contact:  Garth Maletic, HR Section Chief, 608-266-2951 or  Deadline to apply:  4/5/2017. Preview Assessment



Aquatic Plant Management: In order to protect diverse and stable communities of native aquatic plants and prevent the spread of invasive aquatic plants, please contact your local aquatic plant management coordinator before engaging in any aquatic plant management or nuisance control activities as a permit may be required.


Protect Oak Trees From Oak Wilt:  To protect oak trees and help prevent oak wilt, the WDNR advises people to avoid pruning oaks from April through July.  Don Kissinger, DNR urban forester, 715-359-5793.


WDNR Reforestation program begins spring 2017 tree seedling sales:  Ordering instructions and more information here: or contact Griffith Nursery office at 715-424-3700. Information on seedling availability, species and tips on how to prepare a site for tree planting: Joe Vande Hey,, 608-574-4904.

River Network’s 8th Annual National Rain Barrel Program will continue through June 2017 to provide free supplies and guidance to allow member groups from around the U.S. to bring the benefits of stormwater conservation into their communities. Interested individuals should check for rain barrel construction events planned nearby, and follow the River Network on Facebook for forthcoming announcements.


Organizations with Frequent Program Offerings:

Aldo Leopold Foundation, Baraboo,

Clean Lakes Alliance,

Friends of Cherokee Marsh, Madison,

Horicon Marsh International Education Center,

Madison Audubon Society, Inc.,

Midwest Renewable Energy Association,

Niagara Escarpment Resource Network,

Riveredge Nature Center, Newburg,

The Prairie Enthusiasts,

Urban Ecology Center, Milwaukee,

UW Madison Arboretum,

Woodland Landowner Information Education,

Woodland School,

Wisconsin Ground Water Association

Wisconsin Wetlands Association,



This list was compiled by Marie Rubietta, UW-Extension Jefferson County, and edited by Peggy Compton, Regional Natural Resources Educator, UW-Extension,, 608-342-1633.  Please send notices and potential listings to Marie.

For general information or to subscribe: University of Wisconsin, U.S. Department of Agriculture and Wisconsin counties cooperating. An EEO/AA employer, University of Wisconsin Extension provides equal opportunities in employment and programming, including Title IX and American with Disabilities (ADA) requirements.