The Research Field Station is housed within Lost Valley Visitor Center and coordinates ecological restoration land management for the northeastern region of the county, including Glacial Park. An internship program is available for college-age students in natural resource related fields of study, in which students are introduced to the length and breadth of conservation in the Midwest. Numerous public programs are offered related to ecological restoration as well the Weekend of Restoration program.
Land Preservation & Natural Resources Division (LPNR) –
Research Field Station
Tom Simpson, Field Station Ecologist
The Research Field Station is responsible for oversight of the LPNR internship program, scientific research on District lands, public education on natural resource issues, curation of scientific specimens, and management and enlargement of the District’ s natural resource and cartographic archives. In addition, staff is responsible for the ongoing restoration management of over 4,000 acres of District lands in Region 1.
Major Areas of Concentration
Region 1 Land Management and Restoration
The RFS program is responsible for day-to-day management activities of protected land within Region 1, the county’s northeast corner. The RFS Ecologist position serves as the Ecologist for this area, and is responsible for ensuring that standard management activities such as prescribed burning, brush removal and control of exotic species is completed at Glacial Park.
Internship Recruitment and Training
The RFS is charged with the development and oversight of much of the LPNR Division’s internship program. These internships provide students an opportunity to gain practical experience within the field of resource management, while assisting the District to complete important restoration, management and research projects. The program utilizes existing District housing facilities at Glacial Park to house students in a residential setting while they are employed by the District.
Ecological Research and Monitoring
The RFS oversees all requests for ecological research on District sites by outside individuals and entities.The RFS Ecologist issues permits, keeps other District departments informed of ongoing research, and ensures that completed data is received in a timely manner by the Conservation District.
The Field Station Ecologist is responsible for the People & Nature Certification Program, the first-ever educational program of workshops designed around the practice and philosophy of ecological restoration and the natural history and science that supports restoration. For more information, click here.
Archives and Research Library
The RFS maintains and enlarges the research library and District land use history archives in the Lost Valley Visitor Center. The archives and library are available to all District staff and the public upon request.