20 episodes

Water in Wisconsin's Northwoods and Michigan's Upper Peninsula serves as the basis of life and health. With countless lakes, rivers, springs, and aquifers, water is also linked with the very identity of this region. As a service to our listeners, WXPR is pleased to announce the creation of a new reporting position with a specific focus: water.

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    • News

Water in Wisconsin's Northwoods and Michigan's Upper Peninsula serves as the basis of life and health. With countless lakes, rivers, springs, and aquifers, water is also linked with the very identity of this region. As a service to our listeners, WXPR is pleased to announce the creation of a new reporting position with a specific focus: water.

    Northwoods Lake Study Aims to Give Insight to Future Lake Health in Warming Climate

    Northwoods Lake Study Aims to Give Insight to Future Lake Health in Warming Climate

    Right now, there is a lake in Vilas County that has no snow on it. Researchers based out of UW-Trout Lake Station in Boulder Junction use shovels, snowblower, and plows to keep it clear all winter long, leaving the thick ice exposed. It’s the second year of field work for the study that is looking at the impact of what no snow or ice cover could mean for the health of lakes in the Northwoods. WXPR first told you about study last winter on The Stream . “This year we actually had freeze up. You

    • 5 min
    Bringing Back History: The Attempt To Restore Wild Rice On Spur Lake

    Bringing Back History: The Attempt To Restore Wild Rice On Spur Lake

    Pete McGeshick II looked out upon Spur Lake and thought about what used to be. “The lake was full,” he said. “The rice bed was full all the way around.” Wild rice used to grow thick on the 113-acre undeveloped lake in eastern Oneida County. It grew tall, too. “You could come out here and you could see people harvesting wild rice,” McGeshick said. “A lot of them, you couldn’t even see because the wild rice was so high.” McGeshick, a Sokaogon Chippewa tribal member and former Rice Chief, is 80

    • 4 min
    Urban Wetlands, A Flood-Control Tool, Face Threats Under New Trump Administration Rule

    Urban Wetlands, A Flood-Control Tool, Face Threats Under New Trump Administration Rule

    The construction on Stevens Street on Rhinelander’s north side is nearly complete as heavy machinery rumbles by the auto dealerships that line the road. But Tom Jerow didn’t come to look at a car or check up on the road work. “I see a beautiful wetland with lots of diverse vegetation that are indicators of wetlands,” Jerow said. Wedged between Rhinelander Toyota and the Aspirus Clinic is a low-lying wetland with tamaracks, cattails, and reeds. Jerow is a retired regional water division leader

    • 5 min
    Half Of Wisconsin’s Wetlands To Lose Federal Protection, Conservation Groups Estimate

    Half Of Wisconsin’s Wetlands To Lose Federal Protection, Conservation Groups Estimate

    Walking out onto a muskeg, or wetland, the first things most people notice are the sensation of sinking and sound of suction. Saturated sphagnum moss, or peat moss, covers the wetland. It’s walkable, but only with knee boots on. Legs sink to calf-level. They’re buoyed by the moss, although water seeps in. But upon arriving at this wetland in Iron County, Aaron Marti first noticed a different sensation. “If you take a deep breath,” he said, “you can get a bit of a whiff of, it’s kind of a sweet,

    • 5 min
    How Do Professionals Manage Local Trout Streams? Often, It’s Through Explosives

    How Do Professionals Manage Local Trout Streams? Often, It’s Through Explosives

    In this line of work, projects don’t start with a bang. They end with one. With a booming explosion on Tuesday morning, a portion of stream at the headwaters of Big Haymeadow Creek in Langlade County again flowed freely, a beaver dam blasted out of the way. Jeremy Irish, an assistant district supervisor with the USDA’s Wildlife Services program, triggered the blast, undoing some of this year’s construction by beavers in the area. In the process, he cleared another portion of one of northern

    • 4 min
    Ashland Sees Historic Oredock Redevelopment As Bridge To The Future

    Ashland Sees Historic Oredock Redevelopment As Bridge To The Future

    A walk to the end of the Ashland Oredock feels like a walk out onto Lake Superior for Ed Monroe. “We’re out amongst the buoys and the shipping lane,” he said. What’s left of the Oredock--a slender tongue of concrete--juts 1,800 feet out from the city of Ashland. Not long ago, the superstructure, a hulking mass of metal, would have risen 80 feet over his head. During the Oredock’s operation, and after it was out of use, kids used to play out here, fishing and even jumping off the top. But even

    • 4 min

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