Upcoming networking and training opportunities with the Pool Patrol
Field notes and functional feeding groups!
The Michigan Vernal Pools Partnership
Save the date: December 6th!
We hope to see you there
The MVPP Annual Meeting is a virtual, year-end gathering of partners, experts, community scientists, and vernal pool enthusiasts to learn & discuss latest updates on vernal pool conservation, research & mapping, and education.
The meeting is free, virtual, and open to all who are interested in learning more about vernal pools, their critical role in forested ecosystems, and how to get involved in vernal pool conservation efforts in your community!
And don't forget to bring all your vernal pool related questions to ask our group of experts!
The second edition of Michigan's Herpetofauna BMP's is now available!
Developed by MVPP partners, Herpetological Resource Management and EGLE, this guide is intended to be used as a resource and decision making aid for regulators, agency land managers, consultants, commercial and residential developers, and private citizens to protect, preserve, and restore the herpetofauna of Michigan.
Are you a teacher looking to work Great Lakes or vernal pool ecology into your classroom?
Check out the Center for Great Lakes Literacy module to vernal pools! Intended to help teachers explore Great Lakes topics with their students, the Great Lakes Literacy Education Exploration module on vernal pools is a 2-3 hour asynchronous course on Google sites that provides an introductory collection of resources and partners to get you started.
Going out into the forest is fun with friends! Join us this Sunday, October 22nd in Okemos, Mi from 12-3 pm.
The Michigan Vernal Pools Partnership and the Vernal Pool Patrol are hosting an in-person gathering for our network of volunteers, partners, and friends to connect, form monitoring groups, and as always, learn more about these fascinating wetlands.
This open house style event is an excellent way to meet and connect with folks passionate about conservation! It is intended for current Pool Patrollers, MVPP partners, and all those interested in joining the Pool Patrol or learning more about vernal pools. Register below!
Michigan Natural Features Inventory will be offering a virtual training to Vernal Pool Patrol program coordinators and interested volunteers on how to map potential vernal pools using aerial imagery. The collective mapping efforts will be added to the Michigan Vernal Pool Database and will help provide a more robust footprint of potential vernal pools across the state!
Two training options will be available based on GIS-skill level and software availability. One using Google Earth, and another ArcGIS Pro. This will be a morning or afternoon training the week of November 13th. Exact date and time TBD.
Vernal Pool Patrollers at Dauner Martin Nature Sanctuary completed their third visit of 2023 in late September.
Waders equipped, these Pool Patrollers were unsurprised to find that both pools they had been monitoring were both partially full – inundated with late summer and fall rain. Fallen maple, beech, and ash leaves, destined to become part of a healthy detritus layer, were collecting and slowly sinking to a shimmering and colorful pool basin.
In the warmer seasons, these pools are large and hold chest deep water, brimming with fairy shrimp and other macroinvertebrates. This time around, the two pools measured depths of 5 and 9 inches, about knee deep, with just a few lonesome daphnia.
The third visit is timed to document when pools dry out – an important element of the Pool Patrol. Observing when a potential pool completely dries confirms the presence of a vernal pool, ensuring that it remains a fishless haven for amphibians and others.
Vernal pool hydroperiods can be variable, and some with a unique flare will not dry out every year. But as frequent visitors of the sanctuary, patrollers at Dauner Martin recalled that it wasn’t until much later in the winter that the pools would usually completely dry out. Perhaps an excuse for another visit...
Functional Feeding Groups ofVernal Pool Macroinvertebrates
Functional feeding groups are a way of classifying aquatic macroinvertebrates based on what they eat and the way they acquire it, or in fancy words “morphological-behavioral adaptations for food acquisition” (Cummins & Merrit, 2005). These groups of macroinvertebrates occupy different niches in aquatic ecosystems as a way to reduce competition for a food source and have developed adaptations (like different mouthparts) that allow them to be specialists at eating certain things.
News and Notes
Follow our social media for vernal pool education, photos, and the occasional meme
The mission of the Michigan Vernal Pools Partnership is to increase awareness, understanding and protection of vernal pools through conservation, research & mapping, education & outreach and collaboration.
The Vernal Pool Patrol is a community science and place-based vernal pool mapping, monitoring, and education program consisting of classroom instruction and data collection in the field. Members learn how to follow a standard protocol to help identify, map, and monitor locations of vernal pools within their local communities.