Local flora and fauna will be the focus of a summer lecture series at Hartman Creek State Park west of Waupaca.
Speakers are current or retired faculty from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point.
The programs start at 7 p.m. Saturdays at the amphitheater in the park and are sponsored by the Friends of Hartman Creek State Park and the park staff.
• June 15 – Emmet Judziewicz , associate professor of biology, will describe some of the more unusual or visually striking plants found in Hartman Creek State Park and its two natural areas. Participants will learn to recognize such plants as angelica, bird’s-foot violet, hop-tree, butterfly milkweed, cardinal flower, Fassett’s locoweed and other species.
• June 29 – Wes Halverson, a retired faculty member of the College of Natural Resources, will discuss how the wildlife depend on the ecological diversity of the park for food and shelter. He will describe the paw, hoof and claw tracks visitors may observe throughout the park. Participants will use field guides to identify the animal tracks during an evening hike.
• July 13 – Virginia Freire, associate professor of biology, will speak about the more useful plants found in Hartman Creek State Park. Participants will be introduced to plants used as a source of natural dyes, cordage, food and medicine. The techniques used to prepare some of the products will be discussed.
• Aug. 3 – Justin Sipiorski, asst. professor in ichthyology and curator of fishes, will discuss the life histories, breeding cycles and mating rituals of darters and minnows in the park.
• Aug. 10 – Jamee Hubbard, associate professor of biology and curator of insects, will explain why Wisconsin’s glaciated landscape has produced ideal habitats for many types of mosquitoes. That is because it contains an abundance of depressions which hold water where marshes, swamps, bogs and lakes have formed. Because of this diversity of habitat, Wisconsin is home to more than 50 species of mosquitoes.