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Spaces: Did you know the college owns a nature preserve?

September 21, 2011 at 4:25 pm

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Newark Road Prairie is a nature preserve owned by Beloit College. Located about eight miles northwest of campus, it’s only a 40-minute bike ride (and an even shorter drive) away.

The prairie sprawls across 32.5 acres, featuring over 300 types of native plants, including two endangered and one threatened species. In addition to flora, the prairie is home to diverse fauna such as painted turtles, red-winged blackbirds, and other small animals common in Southern Wisconsin.

This plot of land is often used as an outdoor classroom and laboratory for field work in the sciences. Biology professor Ken Yasukawa has used the prairie to study the behavior of red-winged blackbirds. Currently, retired Beloit professor Dick Newsome is monitoring rare orchids on the preserve, and India John’12 is conducting research on water use by native plants.

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