- Chris Acy – AIS Coordinator, Winnebago Waterways Program, Fox-Wolf Watershed Alliance
Chris works with a variety of audiences on aquatic invasive species (AIS) prevention through education and outreach as well as helping to develop an AIS Strategic Plan for the Winnebago Lakes. He implemented a Clean Boats, Clean Waters (CBCW) program for the Fox-Wolf Watershed Alliance (FWWA) in cooperation with UW-Oshkosh’s and Calumet County’s CBCW programs. Chris has also helped to prevent the introduction of possible AIS by working on the Habitattitude national campaign focused on responsible pet ownership and limiting pet releases into our lakes and rivers. In addition, Chris is working to develop local AIS projects such as: Citizen Lake Monitoring for AIS, Bait Shop Outreach, ProjectRED, phragmites monitoring, Purple Loosestrife Biocontrol, and many more!
Originally from Colorado, Chris is very familiar with the Appleton area as he graduated from Lawrence University in 2015 with degrees in Biology and Music. During his time at Lawrence, Chris conducted research on how to more effectively stop the spread of the invasive New Zealand mud snail. Following graduation, Chris moved south where he graduated this spring with his Masters degree in Biology from the University of Oklahoma. He is very excited to be back in Appleton and join the Fox Wolf Watershed Alliance as it continues to work on stopping the spread of invasive species!
January 20th @ Neenah Public Library 1:00 PM: Invaders Lurking in Our Waterways,” by Chris Acy, AIS Coordinator, Fox River Watershed Alliance. What types of invaders lurk in our waterways? What impact do they have on native habitat and species? Chris will help participants identify aquatic invasive species (AIS) as well as share with us what we can do to help prevent them from spreading. Learn what you can do through projects such as Citizen Lake Monitoring for AIS, Bait Shop Outreach, ProjectRED, phragmites monitoring, Purple Loosestrife Biocontrol, and many more! Do your part to help stop the spread of alien invaders lurking in our lakes and rivers.
- Mike Grisar – Principal Ecologist, WEC Energy Group
Mike Grisar, Principal Ecologist for the WEC Energy Group, has for nearly 20 years worked as an ecologist in Wisconsin and Michigan on a variety of wetland, waterway, endangered and threatened species; habitat restoration and management; and natural resource based initiatives and projects. Currently, he supports various electric, gas, hydro-electric, property management, and other generating and distribution facets of the WEC Energy Group’s subsidiary companies, including We Energies. He leads project teams to maintain compliance with local, state and federal natural resource-based regulations and many of the company’s environmental stewardship initiatives and programs.
Mike has served on several natural resource based non-profit boards and state advisory committees with emphasis on endangered and threatened species, watershed management and invasive species. Mike has a B.S. in Environmental Science with an emphasis in Natural Resources from Carroll University (Waukesha, Wisconsin).
January 20th @ Paper Discovery Center 10:30 AM & 1 PM: “WE Energies – Raptor Success Story” Join Mike Grisar, Principal Ecologist for WEC Energy Group and researcher, Greg Septon, recount how one man’s love for peregrines and an environmentally sound utility company teamed up to restore raptor populations.
- Joseph Henry — Upper Lake Michigan Ecologist, NE Region, WDNR
Joe Henry is the Upper Lake Michigan Ecologist in the Northeast Region for the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. He has worked in the natural resources field for the past 20 years and has a broad knowledge of the stewardship of natural communities and the management challenges facing resource management agencies. Joe’s job responsibilities include providing management recommendations for minimizing threats to E/T species, biotic inventory work, assisting with property master plan development, granting writing and land management and invasive species control. In his spare time, Joe enjoys spending time with his kids (Hannah and Jacob), hunting, fishing and backpacking with his wife Rebecca.
- Ryan Koenigs — Sturgeon Biologist, Winnebago System, WDNR
Ryan has been with the WDNR for 10.5 years, all of which have been in Oshkosh and the past 10 have been working with our sturgeon program. He is locally grown from Chilton, which is centrally located on the east shore of Lake Winnebago. His main passions are spending time with his wife and young children and fishing. He has always been passionate about the outdoors and fishing and was an active sturgeon spearer and hook and line angler prior to working with the WDNR. He considers it a dream job to be the Sturgeon Biologist for the Winnebago System, and has personal and professional interest in the management of this well-known resource. He also is currently serving a 2nd term on the Executive Committee of the North American Sturgeon and Paddlefish Society and was the planning chair for a recent society meeting that was held in Oshkosh in 2015.
January 20th @ Neenah Public Library 11 AM: “Sturgeon Success Story” by DNR Sturgeon Biologist, Ryan Koenigs. People of all ages are drawn to opportunities to observe this unique species that inhabits the Lake Winnebago System. Thousands flock to river banks every spring to observe the spawning ritual or brave the cold in winter for the spearing season. In many regions where sturgeon were once prevalent, over harvest and loss of habitat negatively impacted most populations. Despite declines through most of their range, lake sturgeon have remained abundant in the Lake Winnebago System. Ryan’s presentation will outline the management activities undertaken by the DNR to protect and manage this culturally and ecologically important resource.
- Dianne Moller – Hoo’s Woods Raptor Center
Dianne Moller is a native of Southern Wisconsin and founded Hoo’s Woods Raptor Center in 1998. She is a licensed educator, falconer, rehabilitator and eagle handler through state and federal agencies. Dianne also serves as Public Relations Officer for the North American Falconer’s Association and also leads an International Women’s Working Group for the International Association of Falconry. She has represented the U.S. at the International Falconry Festival in the Middle East in 2011 and 2014. In April 2015, she was awarded Wildlife Conservationist of the Year by the Wisconsin Wildlife Federation.
January 20th @ Paper Discovery Center 12 PM & 2:30 PM: “Hoo’s Woods Raptor Presentation” Educator, rehabilitator, and licensed falconer, Diane Moeller, will introduce you to Wesley, a snowy owl; Wapaha, a golden eagle; and Catelyn, the peregrine falcon and a few other feathered friends. Participants will learn about each species’ natural history, breeding, habitat and behaviors. This program will leave you spellbound, anxious to learn more about these fascinating birds.
- Kelly Reyer – Outreach Coordinator, Fox-Wolf Watershed Alliance
Kelly provides outreach and education regarding the Fox-Wolf River Basin, water quality, stormwater runoff, area conservation projects, volunteer opportunities and more for Fox-Wolf Watershed Alliance (FWWA). Her outreach efforts extend into classrooms in the watershed, at community events and presentations, through educational materials, and on social media. Since starting with FWWA, she has updated the Renew Our Waters outreach materials, created a Watershed Pledge outreach tool, and expanded the annual Fox-Wolf Watershed Cleanup. She also coordinates volunteers annually for Aesthetics Monitoring in the Green Bay area, helps coordinate the annual Bringing Back the Bay Tour, and has expanded the overall amount of outreach conducted on behalf of the Northeast Wisconsin Stormwater Consortium (NEWSC)—a subsidiary of FWWA.
Kelly graduated from the University of Wisconsin—Oshkosh in 2012 with a degree in Environmental Studies. Prior to joining the FWWA in 2014, she worked for four years in the Environmental Studies office at UW-Oshkosh and four years with the Butte des Morts Conservation Club. She enjoys spending time in the outdoors, and feels fortunate that she works for an organization that promotes the protection, restoration, and sustainability of the water resources that she loves.”
January 20th @ Neenah Public Library 9:30 AM: “Preserving Our Watersheds” by Kelly Ryer, Fox River Watershed Alliance. Preserving watersheds is vital to the survival of eagles and other wildlife dependent upon this habitat. Kelly will provide outreach and education regarding the Fox-Wolf River Basin, water quality, stormwater runoff, area conservation projects, and volunteer opportunities for watershed cleanup and aesthetics. A model will be used to simulate what happens, not only from run off into lakes and rivers, but with what happens to the water resources beneath our feet.
- Greg Septon – Peregrine Management & Research, LLC.
Greg Septon is a researcher specializing in the recovery of peregrine falcons. For the past 30 years he has directed and managed a successful and expanding urban Peregrine Falcon recovery effort in Wisconsin and has banded over 1,000 wild-produced peregrines. Working in conjunction with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Office of International Affairs, he has also implemented an urban Peregrine Falcon recovery program in Russia and was involved with initiating a similar program in Poland. Greg has conducted research throughout the world including in Tasmania, Australia, Costa Rica, and across North America. For over 25 years, he worked at the Milwaukee Public Museum directing the Natural History Outreach Section and managed the Natural History Lecture Series, International Travel/Tour Program and Environmental/Arts Exhibits.
He was the founder and Chairman of the Wisconsin Peregrine Society and past leader of the State of Wisconsin Peregrine Falcon Recovery Team. Greg has served in executive leadership roles for numerous boards related to raptor and avian research and management. In 2014, he received the Noel J. Cutright Conservation Award from the Wisconsin Society for Ornithology recognizing him for his outstanding work with threatened and endangered species in Wisconsin.
January 20th @ Paper Discovery Center 10:30 AM & 1 PM: “WE Energies – Raptor Success Story” Join Mike Grisar, Principal Ecologist for WE Energies and researcher, Greg Septon, recount how one man’s love for peregrines and an environmentally sound utility company teamed up to restore raptor populations.
- Bryan Woodbury – Wildlife Biologist, WDNR
Bryan is a Wildlife Biologist for the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. He has been stationed in Appleton for the last 3 years. He has spent the previous 12 years working in Oshkosh, Spring Green and Madison. He is responsible for managing 16,000 acres of DNR owned land in Outagamie and Northern Winnebago County. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Wildlife Management and Biology from the University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point.
Northeast Wisconsin Alliance, Inc. (NEW Alliance) partnered with the DNR to recruit and organize volunteers to monitor eagle presence or absence during winter along the Fox River from Lake Winnebago in Neenah to Wrightstown. This partnership has been collecting data since January 2009. Data collected is used to determine the overall health of the ecosystem through identification of critical wintering, nesting, roosting, and feeding sites on 20 + miles of river. This presentation will discuss the project and data collected during the first 8 years of monitoring.
January 13th @Atlas Waterfront Cafe & gathering room 11:00 AM-12:00 PM: Bryan will give an update of data collected through Northeast Wisconsin Alliance‘s citizen/science monitoring program that began in 2009. Monitors will also share their experiences from the morning’s monitoring session.
*Fox Cities: Neenah, Menasha, Appleton, Kimberly, Little Chute, Combined Locks, Kaukauna, Wrightstown, Town of Neenah, Fox Crossing, Town of Menasha, Town of Grand Chute, Town of Greenville, Town of Buchanan, Town of Kaukauna, Town of Harrison and Village of Harrison