Northland College’s research project—Wild Madeline: Assessing the Wildlife Presence and Abundance of Madeline Island—was one of thirty applications to receive grant funding from the Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin through the 2016 C.D. Besadny Conservation Grant Program.

The Wild Madeline project leader and Northland College Professor Erik Olson said they received a $1,000 grant to support an effort to assess the wildlife diversity of Madeline Island.

“What we’re going to be doing is implementing a camera trap survey,” Olson said describing how they would be installing trail cameras at certain locations within the Madeline Island Wilderness Preserve as well as the Big Bay State Park lands on Madeline Island. “We will be looking at camera trap images to determine which species are present on the island and how abundant those species are. The primary purpose of this is to collect data.”

The results of the Wild Madeline project will be compared to similar projects going on in the Apostle Islands as well as the mainland of the Bayfield Peninsula.

“It will allow us to look at how island size, island distance, and habitat of islands influence the wildlife composition and abundance,” Olson said. “We really haven’t looked to see what wildlife is out there and how abundant it is, and then we haven’t taken it a step further to compare the abundance and diversity of wildlife on those islands to that on the mainland.”


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