Hubachek Wilderness Research Center | Ely, MN

Storm clouds in the evening
sunset on bay

Mid-August 2022

The high populations of biting insects supported by this summer's frequent rains are starting to dwindle. Remarkably prolific blueberries and raspberries of this season are also becoming harder to find. A few leaves are changing color - harbingers of fall. Last week was gloriously "perfect" in human terms, with the dry air and comfortable temperatures historically typical of August in the Superior National Forest. This week is looking rainy again. It's all good.

Researchers and interns continue their work to discover more about forest responses to climate change with the B4WarmED research project.

The Monitoring Avian Productivity and Survivorship project at the HWRC concluded 2022's banding season early this month. The loud territorial chorus of breeding birds has ended, with mixed species flocks foraging busily and communicating via their "chip" calls of late summer. It's the season of loon calls – or do we just fail to hear them over the bird music of June and July?

The first University of Minnesota Invasive Species Conference in late June was an enjoyable, informative event and we are planning to make it even better next time.

The new well is (almost) ready to be connected to the water system as soon as the need arises. Yes, we've been saying this for months now; parts were slow to arrive and our plumber has been very busy elsewhere, but it really is close. A plan for a site-wide electrical system update is under review. University of Minnesota IT professionals from the Twin Cities and Duluth campuses are working on the preliminaries for a significant internet upgrade slated for installation at HWRC this fall.

We enjoyed hosting the (new to us) College of Earth and Environmental Sciences' Advanced Field Geology course a couple of weeks ago. The Forest Resources Department's Park and Protected Area Management Field Studies, back after a two-year hiatus, will start later this week.

Check out the new article, People, Fire, and Pines: How Fire Use by the Anishinaabeg Shaped the Boundary Waters by Clare Boerigter.

Learn more about activities at the Hubachek Wilderness Research Center and its big-sister research station, the Cloquet Forestry Center, in our View From the Woods 2021 newsletter.

News

Even modest warming could cause major changes for forests in the Great Lakes region and southern Canada

August 10, 2022

Even relatively modest climate change could dramatically alter Minnesota’s Northwoods and the southern boreal forest that runs from eastern Canada to Alaska, according to a rare long-term experiment by a team of researchers led by U of M professor Peter Reich.