A common winter resident that still may be found in March across Wachiska’s counties is the Rough-legged Hawk (Buteo lagoons). It may be difficult to distinguish from the Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis), but if the hawk is sitting at the very tip of a tree branch, it’s a good guess it’s a Rough-legged because they have very small feet with feathers extending to them. Also, the bill is small compared to other hawks.
Changing the Conversation
About Native Prairie
by Kay Kottas, Ph.D.
Thursday, March 11, 2021 at 7:00 p.m.
Wachiska Program — Thursday, March 11, 7:00 p.m., via Zoom web conference (registration required)
Link to register: https://zoom.us/meeting/register/tJMqde6ppz4rGdyFr7wAV6rLKsfWx97tA6y1
Pasture, grassland, CRP, rangeland, remnant prairie, bird habitat, weeds, hay field, pollinator habitat, hunting land, grass buffer, landscape, meadow, go-back land, ecosystem, real estate—all names for prairie reflecting the view of the beholder.
Tallgrass prairie is the most imperiled ecosystem on our continent; worldwide it is second only to the rainforest in scarcity—and yet our conversations about native plants and prairie are still focused on our own anthropocentric view of the world.
The conversation about native prairie has revolved around its place in agrarian society since the early 1800s. “The Great American Desert” is how Major Stephen Long, a government surveyor, described the North American grasslands. It is all in what we value. Native plants as pollinator habitat are the new paradigm that has come into favor of late, but even that can be misguided if we are not careful. Which, if any, view of the prairie will afford it the value necessary to preserve the remaining one or two percent?
Dr. Kay Kottas is a prairie ecologist, botanist, horticulturist, and former instructor of North American native plants, horticulture, and botany at UNL and Nebraska Wesleyan University. As president of Prairie Legacy, Inc., Kay travels the state doing environmental surveys and providing restoration consulting. She is the chair of the Nebraska Seed and Plant Producers, an organization created to support and increase knowledge and availability of the local ecotype plant material in Nebraska.
Join Dr. Kottas in a discussion titled “Changing the Conversation About Native Prairie” at Wachiska’s next Zoom presentation on Thursday, March 11, at 7:00 p.m. This free, public program is available to those who register at https://zoom.us/meeting/register/tJMqde6ppz4rGdyFr7wAV6rLKsfWx97tA6y1. Copy and paste this link into your browser or go to Wachiska’s website after March 1 and click on the link directly from the notice to register. You will then receive a confirmation with the meeting number and password. Keep that email and a few minutes before the program is to begin, click on that confirmation and you’ll be invited into the meeting.
March Calendar of Events
March 8 Conservation Committee, 5:30 p.m.
via Zoom (check with Chairman)
March 11 General Meeting video Zoom 7:00 p.m
(note required registration)
"Changing the Conversation about Prairies"
by Dr. Kay Kottas 7:00 p.m.
March 15 Newsletter deadline, Wachiska office,
March 16 Board Meeting via Zoom, 7:00 p.m.
(contact Theresa Pella for meeting
number/password if not a Board member
and want to attend.)
March 25 Legislative Committee via Zoom, 7:00 p.m.
No Education Committee meeting this month.
Tax time tip. Thanks to the CARES Act you will be allowed to deduct up to $300 of monetary charitable contributions on your 2020 tax return, even if you don't itemize. Make sure the contribution is paid directly to the non-profit qualifying charity and talk to your tax advisor to see how this may benefit you.
The photos on this website were taken by Wachiska members. Many thanks to Bruce Wendorff,
Linda Brown, Paul Johnsguard, Tim Knott, Stu Luttich, John Carlini and Elizabeth Nelson.