Science Cafés Continue

Sea Grant’s two speaker series, the RiverTalks and the LakeTalks, will continue in a virtual mode when they begin their seasons this fall.

More than 1,000 people have participated in informal discussions about the St. Louis River along the Wisconsin-Minnesota border over the seven-year life of the RiverTalks series.Topics for the most recent season ranged from a search for bloody red shrimp, tribal efforts to protect and restore wild rice (manoomin), and a unique project to deter Canada geese from eating wild rice in the estuary.

The talks were held at the Lake Superior Estuarium in Superior, Wisconsin, except for the May talk, which was held virtually, to safeguard the participants from coronavirus exposure.

Talk partners include the Wisconsin and Minnesota Sea Grant Programs and the Lake Superior National Estuarine Research Reserve. Plans are in the works for next season’s series, which will likely continue in virtual mode.

A newer series called the LakeTalks began in spring 2020, with the intent of holding talks in a range of communities near the Lake Michigan shore. Just one LakeTalk — held March 4 at the Neville Public Museum in Green Bay — was able to take place before the rest of the season was postponed due to public health concerns.

This fall, the two events that would have taken place in the spring, as well as two additional talks, will take place virtually.Topics include “Green Bay: A Saga of Life, Destruction and Restoration,” with speakers Cadie Olson and Brandon Falish, graduate student researchers
at UW-Green Bay, and “But It’s So Pretty: Combating Purple Loosestrife With Look-a-Likes” with Molly Bodde, a Sea Grant aquatic invasive species outreach specialist.

Stay tuned to the Wisconsin Sea Grant website and social media accounts for more on these events. —JAS and MEZ