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Title:Moments From the Prairie
Author(s):Schrage, Alma
Contributor(s):Loner, Will; Repiscak, Maria
Abstract:I spend most of my summers in the field surveying for the federally endangered rusty-patched bumble bee (shown above, center) along with other bumble bee species in prairie restorations across the Chicago region for the Illinois Natural History Survey. I – and most ecologists I think – live for our field seasons. It’s a chance to step away from the human tempo as our hours are dictated by the hours of the species we study. Time slows down as we go about the steady, methodical accumulation of observing and data collection; yet at the same time the days speed up, as every day is filled with something new and unfamiliar not seen the day before – a new animal, a new plant, the way the clouds move. Every day of a field season stands out in the memory, vivid and crystalline. As the long, cold winter months go by and I slowly move through data proofing, analysis, and writing, my work is fueled by the memory of long, hot days on the prairie. I slowly translate the patterns I see there, but this time from the bird’s eye view of the data.
Issue Date:2021
Description:Many thanks to the indefatigable research assistants Maria Repiscak and Will Loner - it couldn't have been done without you!
Rights Information:Copyright 2021 Alma Schrage
Date Available in IDEALS:2021-04-12

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