Yahara Lakes 101 - Pheasant Branch Conservancy: Protect, Restore, Preserve
Event Dates
  • 08/12/2020 8:00 am - 9:00 am
Event Description

Join the Clean Lakes Alliance for an ONLINE edition of Yahara Lakes 101 to learn about the issues that impact our lakes! About this Talk We'll hear from representatives of the Friends of Pheasant Branch Conservancy, Dane County, and City of Middleton about the recently purchased, 160-acre farm directly north of Pheasant Branch Conservancy.

The property acquisition is the largest conservation preservation investment in Dane County's history, costing nearly 10 million dollars. Pheasant Branch Conservancy is a natural area owned by the Dane County Parks Department, the City of Middleton, and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. The area is also host to the Friends of Pheasant Branch Conservancy, a dedicated group focused on restoring, protecting, and promoting the conservancy as an ecological whole. The conservancy is a natural area made up of many types of diverse habitats, including wetlands, prairies, and forests. Home to a wide variety of animals and plants, the land contains the headwaters of a stream which flows into Pheasant Branch Creek before it reaches Lake Mendota. Restoring the additional Dane County property to natural prairie will help to improve infiltration of rainwater into the ground. Prairie plants often have better root systems than crops, allowing prairies to absorb the rainwater where it falls instead of running off into the nearest waterway. The deep root systems also hold soil in place, which reduces the amount of sediment lost with runoff. Dane County expects to prevent more than 2.6 million gallons of runoff each year through increased infiltration into the natural landscape.

About our Speakers

  • Lloyd Eagan (Friends of Pheasant Branch Conservancy) graduated from Smith College with a degree in Environmental Biology and moved to Madison – the birthplace of limnology – to pursue a master’s degree in Water Resources Management from the University of Wisconsin Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies. After several water quality planning jobs, she became Dane County’s FIRST Lakes and Watershed Coordinator. She spent nearly 35 years working for the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, serving more than six years as the regional director of the south-central region, and for the final two years of her career she returned to her water roots and served as Water Leader for the southern half of Wisconsin. She currently serves as the co-president of the Friends of Pheasant Branch Conservancy.
  • County Executive Joe Parisi has called Dane County home his entire life. Joe sought out public service as a way to give back to a community that has given so much to him. Joe was first elected as County Executive, the chief elected leader of Dane County, in 2011 after 6 years in the State Assembly and 8 years as Dane County Clerk. Joe’s priority is to ensure that everyone in our community has access to the opportunity to succeed. He believes investing in people pays big dividends. Joe knows this can work because he experienced it. As a teenager, Joe dropped out of high school. He was encouraged to return to education through a community program by people who believed in him. So he worked to earn his GED and went on to MATC (now Madison College) and graduated from UW-Madison with a degree in sociology. Now Joe believes it is his turn to give back to ensure that our children’s generation has access to the same opportunities that were available to him.
  • Kenneth Potter (City of Middleton Water Resources Commission) is an Emeritus Professor of Civil & Environmental Engineering at the University of Wisconsin. He received a B.S. in Geology from Louisiana State University in 1968 and a Ph.D. in Geography and Environmental Engineering from the Johns Hopkins University in 1976. His teaching and research interests are in hydrology and water resources, and include estimation of hydrological risk, especially flood risk; stormwater modeling, management and design; adaptation of hydrologic design to climate change; assessment and mitigation of human impacts on aquatic systems; restoration of aquatic systems; and sediment and phosphorus control through management of streams, drainage ditches, and wetlands. He has been a member of numerous National Research Council committees, including the Committee on Restoration of the Greater Everglades Ecosystem, the Committee on New Orleans Regional Hurricane Protection Projects, and the Committee on Levees and the National Flood Insurance Program: Improving Policies and Practices. He is a Fellow of the American Geophysical Union and the American Association for the Advancement of Science and a Lifetime National Associate of the National Academies. He is member of City of Middleton’s Water Resources Commission. Event Details

This event will be held online via Zoom. The online talk is free and open to the public. A link to access the talk LIVE will be sent to all registered attendees ahead of the event. Yahara Lakes 101 Lecture Series Yahara Lakes 101 is a series of educational events open to the public and a great chance for residents to learn more about the science behind the issues that affect our lakes. Each month Clean Lakes Alliance feature a different expert to make the science accessible and interesting to non-technical audiences. The series is produced in partnership with the UW-Madison Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies, with presenting sponsors First Weber Foundation and Johnson Financial Group, hosting sponsor The Edgewater, supporting sponsor National Guardian Life Insurance Company, and media partner the Isthmus.


Virtual Meeting via Zoom



Talk or Workshop