Overall Rating Expired
Overall Score Expired
Liaison Jeff Spoelstra
Submission Date July 22, 2014
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

Western Michigan University
OP-11: Biodiversity

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete Expired Tim Holysz
Director
Landscape Services
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution own or manage land that includes or is adjacent to legally protected areas, internationally recognized areas, priority sites for biodiversity, and/or regions of conservation importance?:
Yes

A brief description of any legally protected areas, internationally recognized areas, priority sites for biodiversity, and/or regions of conservation importance on institution owned or managed land:

Asylum Lake Preserve covers 278 acres and is the site of a former State of Michigan Colony Farm for the mentally Ill. The Preserve includes two lakes totaling 56 acres, 106 acres of Oak forest, 51 acres reconstructed prairie, 32 acres of savanna, and 15 acres of wet meadow. The site was historically Oak savanna and in close proximity to a former tallgrass prairie and Burr Oak opening. Kleinstuck is a historic glacial kettle bog in the heart of the City of Kalamazoo with 28 acres of upland forest, 7 acres of transition woodland, 5 acres of Marsh, 5 acres of swamp forest and, 2 acres sedge meadow. The preserve is surrounded by neighborhoods with an additional contiguous 40 acres of private woodland that is not separated by fencing from the Preserve. The WMU business Research and Technology Park includes 20 acres of landscape devoted to storm water management and 140 acres of low maintenance natural landscape that includes reconstructed prairie, woodlots and buffer zones.


Has the institution conducted an assessment or assessments to identify endangered and vulnerable species with habitats on institution-owned or –managed land?:
Yes

Has the institution conducted an assessment or assessments to identify environmentally sensitive areas on institution-owned or –managed land?:
Yes

The methodology(-ies) used to identify endangered and vulnerable species and/or environmentally sensitive areas and any ongoing assessment and monitoring mechanisms:

Ecological surveys have been accomplished using a mix of private restoration companies, faculty, staff, and students. These assessments are based on site plant identification, GIS technology, photographic evidence and, academic resources.


A brief description of identified species, habitats and/or environmentally sensitive areas:

As recent as 2013 the woodlot assessment project has identified on University property the first recorded population of Dwarf Hackberry (Celtic tenuifolia) in Kalamazoo County, a tree of special concern in Michigan. University property also supports populations of Eastern Box Turtle (Terrapene Carolina Carolina) a reptile of special concern in Michigan. Previous surveys have found remnants of prairie and savanna species on or adjacent to University properties including: Starry Campion (silene stellate), Rough Liatris (Liatris aspera) among others. University Preserves also support robust populations of many woodland ephemeral spring wildflowers including Large flower Trillium (Trillium grandiflora), Stinking Benjamin (Trillium erectum), Bloodroot (Sanguinariacanadensis), Trout Lily (Erythronium americanum), Dutchman’s Breeches (Dicentra cucullaria), Toothwort (Cardamine diphylla), Spring Beauty (Claytonia virginica), Marsh Marigold (Caltha palustris), Blue Cohosh (Caulophyllum thalictroides), among others. http://www.fm.wmich.edu/lss/natural_areas


A brief description of plans or programs in place to protect or positively affect identified species, habitats and/or environmentally sensitive areas:

When unique, rare or historically significant native species are identified on University properties the Landscape Services Department works to inform the community and Campus Planning concerning the best management practices and protocols to preserve, protect and enhance these significant feature. Recently a student initiated grant was secured to manage the remnant savanna site on which the Dwarf Hackberry (Celtis tenuifolia) was found. In addition to department labor and equipment, this grant will help accelerate the clearing of invasive species, establishment of additional native savanna species, as well as provide for informational signage on the site.


The website URL where information about the institution’s biodiversity policies and programs(s) is available:

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution and complete the Data Inquiry Form.