As a Huron Pines AmeriCorps member Dan will be serving at the UPRC&D Council as the Invasive Plant Specialist. Dan holds a bachelor’s degree in Natural Resource Management from Grand Valley State University and has previously worked at the Santa Ana National Wildlife Refuge in Texas as a plant ecology intern, and as a member of the Huron Pines Restoration Field Crew in Gaylord, MI. Throughout his service term at the UPRC&D Council, Dan’s main focus will be on garlic mustard and non-native Phragmites mapping and management. He will continue garlic mustard management efforts started under the RRIP-IT-UP project (details on the RRIP-IT-UP tab in the left column) by educating students, recruiting volunteers to help manage infestations, developing outreach materials, and attending events to promote awareness of garlic mustard issues. Since this is the second and final year of funding for our U.P. wide Phragmites project, Dan will continue efforts to survey and map phragmites infestations and visit with landowners to provide them with invasive plant technical assistance. Also, as a certified pesticide applicator, Dan will help the local conservation districts to treat outlying infestations.
Another important part of Dan’s service will be working wih all five Cooperative Weed Management Areas (CWMAs) developing outreach materials to increase exposure of a new group called the Upper Peninsula Invasives Council (UPIC). We hope the formation of this group will facilitate communication between the five CWMAs to more efficiently manage invasive species. Dan has already implemented a bimonthly electronic newsletter called The UPIC eNews which highlights projects, invasive species news, stories from the field, or anything of interest to the 5 CWMAs. Dan will also serve on the conference planning committee for the 5th annual Northern Great Lakes Invasive Species Conference, which will be held in the fall of 2014.