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Douglas Lake Report A Special Report to Alumni & Friends of the University of Michigan Biological Station

Spring 2012

The Long View

Two Multi-Decade Research Projects at UMBS Long-term surveys are the marathon event of research. One must return to the same place, the same subjects, and the same methods, over a period of years or decades. Last summer, two researchers at the Station did just that. Owen Lind, a Professor of Biology at Baylor University, conducted his 6th survey of Douglas Lake in 40 years. At the age of 86, Douglas James,

Douglas James in the UMBS aspen plot, 1997.

University Professor of Biological Sciences at the University of Arkansas, completed his 7th bird census in 65 years. “Long-term research reveals dynamics we could never discover in a season or even several seasons of study,” says UMBS Director Knute Nadelhoffer. James’s surveys illustrate northern Michigan’s recovery from widespread logging. In Lind’s case, he documented the impact of invasive species. James first came to Bug Camp as a Master’s student in 1946. The next year, at the request of Dr. Olin Sewall Pettingill, James staked out a 49-acre census plot east of East Burt Lake Road and south of Riggsville Road for students in the ornithology class to use. That was the site and inaugural year of James’s breeding bird territory mapping project. He returned for several years in the early 70's, in the late 90's and in 2008. Others did the censuses in 1949, 1950 and 1971, thus totaling 10 altogether. “I tried to get two or three censuses over a close span of years each time to average the yearly variation in numbers,” James explains. He also sampled the vegetation using protocol designed by Dr. Frank Gates. When James began his surveys, the region was still rebounding from wildfires and lumbering. The aspen-birch canopy was only 30-40 feet high. James counted 24 territories and 13 different bird species. see Research, p. 5



calendar SPRING term May 20 - June 16 MINI-COURSES June 13 - 17 SUMMER I term June 23 - July 21 DISCOVERY DAY July 14 SUMMER II term July 22 - Aug. 18 FULL SUMMER term June 23 - Aug. 18

Director's Notes W

Knute Nadelhoffer UMBS Director

hen writing reports and proposals to support our field station’s programs, I am at a loss for words in trying to categorize our residents. Too often I find myself writing about our faculty, researchers, and students as if members of these groups were filling entirely different roles. The truth is, however, that all Biological Station residents function as teachers, field scientists, and learners. Our course instructors, or “faculty,” conduct research on site and glean new knowledge from their students’ and colleagues’ field studies. Those taking classes – “students” – nevertheless conduct field research yielding new information from which others learn. Our “researchers,” those faculty-level and advanced graduate student investigators who are not teaching formal courses, typically share their time and talents to mentor undergraduates and novice graduate students. Our “staff,” who work in support of our operations and programs, contribute in multiple ways to our research efforts. If I had my druthers, I would refer to all who work at the Station simply as researchers. Unfortunately, because those who have not experienced a UMBS field season would interpret this term too narrowly, I am forced to continue referring to our residents in terms that fail to describe the richness and value of their work. Engagement in research by all is not a recent development at the Biological Station. The “long view” is illustrative. Research is embedded in our culture and we have offered researchcentered field courses continually since 1909. Last spring, we celebrated the 100th year of our birds/ornithology class, which has contributed over 851 student papers to science. Field courses such as this have engaged students and their instructors working together as researchers from the start, as documented in photographs lining the walls of Stockard Lakeside Laboratory, the Dining Hall, and the Alumni Room of the Gates Lecture Hall. I am pleased to report some exciting developments related to our research mission. Last February, we appointed one of an expected larg-


er group of UMBS-based Research Scientists, Dr. Lucas (Luke) Nave. Research Scientists are faculty-level positions at the U-M. They are expected to meet the high standards of scholarly performance of traditional tenure-track faculty and to attract funding for research from outside sources. Dr. Nave’s appointment as Assistant Research Scientist will enable him to assume leadership roles in research and mentoring. We anticipate that he will work with us to advance our programs as we work with him to advance his research stature at national and international levels. Second, the LSA Deans’ Office has provided support to add another Research Scientist to our program. Before we begin a search to fill this position, we are seeking opportunities to leverage this anticipated Research Scientist position to include two or more positions by exploring partnerships with other U-M units. We look forward to building a dynamic cohort of Research Scientists who will base their field research at the Station and will engage collaborators from across U-M and other institutions. Finally, with support from LSA and an NSF grant, we held our first Winter Research Meeting on March 9th and 10th. Over 60 people – former, current and prospective researchers, faculty and students – attended this two-day gathering in Ann Arbor. Eighteen people presented research talks and four shared posters. Also included were planning sessions for aquatic, atmospheric, and forest research programs. We expect that future winter meetings will facilitate collaborations, improve research quality, broaden our impacts, attract new students, and engage new members from U-M and elsewhere in our field programs. We also plan to develop opportunities for you, our friends and alumni, to participate in this new forum for sharing information and planning for our future. As always, thank you for your generous support. Sincerely,

Station News Facilities Update The best news for the Station's facilities is that Richard Spray, who broke his ankle in a fall from a hunting blind last autumn, is back at work after surgery and a long recovery. The Dining Hall and Kitchen will open this spring with new flooring throughout (carpeting and tile).

Service Anniversaries This winter we celebrated three UMBS service annivarsaries: Karen Bowman completed her 20th year as Service Supervisor. Both Knute Nadelhoffer and Karie Slavik finished their 10th years as Director and Associate Director, respectively.

Karen Bowman rarely seen sitting still, sewing curtains for the cabins.

Researcher Crumsey Schools Legislators on Climate Change

Luke Nave appointed Research Professor

Jasmine Crumsey, whose research on earthworms is housed in our Biotron, participated in Climate Science Day on Capital Hill in February. The National Ecological Observatory Network (NEON) selected Crumsey for travel funding to and special communications training in Washington, D.C. prior to the event. On Science Day, Crumsey and 29 other scientists met with legislators to discuss the impacts of climate change. Crumsey is a graduate student at the University of Michigan. She is in Knute Nadelhoffer's lab in the Department of Jasmine Crumsey Ecology and Evolutionary Biology. She photo credit: Dale Austin is also pursuing a graduate certificate in Science Technology and Public Policy at the U-M Ford School of Public Policy.

The Station is pleased to welcome Luke Nave as an Assistant Research Scientist at UMBS, effective February, 2012. Prior to that, he was a Postdoctoral Researcher on the Forest Accelerated Succession Experiment Luke Nave (FASET) project with Knute Nadelhoffer. Nave, who got his Ph.D. at Ohio State University in Peter Curtis’s lab, says, “One of the finest things about doing science at UMBS has been the chance to work with the outstanding researchers who come here to study forest biogeochemistry.” In his new capacity, Nave will continue working on FASET. He will also become more involved in grant writing and mentoring students. Nave describes his new job as the “logical next step” for his career, but says he also feels very fortunate to be able to stay at UMBS. “I anticipate working on the nitrogen cycling aspects of [FASET] until [Lab Associate] Jim Le Moine and I need all-terrain wheelchairs to go out and collect samples.”

CORRECTION: In the Fall 2011 Douglas Lake Report, we incorrectly stated that the Gates family was the only one with a 4-generation connection to the Station. Alumna Nancy Paul writes, The Eggleton family also has a four-generation history at Bug Camp though it may not run as directly. Grandpa Frank [Eggleton] taught there for many years. Mom and Dad [Phyllis (Eggleton) and Burne White] both took classes as did my brother, Bill, and I. The one you may not be aware of is my sister Suzanne's son - and Frank's great grandson - JT Knight, who took Ecology and Evolutionary Biology in Spring 2010. If yours is another 4-generation family we've neglected to note, or you find an error in the newsletter, please let us know: farmeral@umich. edu.


In Memorium

The Biological Station honors two former faculty members, renowned among their colleagues and students. Eugene Filmore Stoermer 1934-2012 Eugene “Gene” Filmore Stoermer passed away at his Ann Arbor home on Friday, February 17, 2012. He taught Freshwater Algae and Ecology of Phytoplankton at the Station from 1969-1973. He returned in the 80's as a researcher. His family held a memorial gathering on Friday, February 24, 2012. The family’s obituary read, in part: Eugene F. Stoermer Ph.D., Professor, scholar, advisor, mentor, friend. He was all of these and more. The great lakes of the world were his special concern. Eminent in his field and respected by his colleagues, he guided 24 students in his lab in their graduate programs and served on numerous other dissertation committees. He is the author of over 200 publications and numerous technical

reports, a research collaborator, an editor of Diatom Research, was President of the Phycological Society of America and the International Society for Diatom Research. He was a pioneer in the investigations of several areas of diatoms, his favorite organisms. Having a world reputation as a diatomist he was always available to anyone who asked for his advice either from the lab, the campus or around the world. Eugene is survived by his wife Bobbie; his daughter Karla Stoermer Grossman and her husband Brian; sons, Eric F. Stoermer and his wife Kati Laszlo Stoermer and Peter E. Stoermer and his wife Tracy Bingham Stoermer; two sisters Judy Hart and her husband Tom and their

Our website has a link to the "Diatoms of the United States" tribute to Dr. Stoermer, complete with many colleagues' recollections.

Edward G. Voss 1929-2012

Ed Voss

children Rich Hart and Cindy Martens; Mary Heidelbauer and her son William Heidelbauer; and five grandchildren, Augustus J. Stoermer, Ethan F. Stoermer, Kathryn M. Grossman, Elysabeth G. Grossman and Sylvia J. Stoermer.

Edward Groesbeck Voss died at his home in Ann Arbor, Michigan, on February 13, 2012. Dr. Voss was professor emeritus of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Michigan, curator emeritus of vascular plants at the University Herbarium, and a legendary teacher at the U-M Biological Station. He was born in Delaware, Ohio. He earned a Bachelor’s of Science with honors from Denison University (1950), a Master’s degree in Biology (1951) and a Ph.D. in Botany from the University of Michigan (1954). He was awarded an honorary Doctor of Science from Denison University in 2003. Dr. Voss was a faculty member at the University of Michigan from 1960-1996. He taught at the University of Michigan Biological Station for 35 summer sessions. He also spent his child-


hood summers in Mackinaw City, Michigan, where his parents encouraged his early interest in biology by taking him as a nine-year-old boy to a “Visitors Day” at the Biological Station. Dr. Voss’s area of scientific research was the vascular plants of the Great Lakes region: their taxonomy, identification, phytogeography, postglacial history, and status in natural environments—with special interest in boreal and aquatic plants. He was also interested in the history of biology (especially early exploration of the Great Lakes region) and in the Lepidoptera of the northern Great Lakes region. The first volume of his Michigan Flora was honored by a Resolution of the Michigan Senate in 1972; the second volume received the H.A. Gleason Award of the New York Botanical Garden; the third and final volume was published late in 1996. On February 16 of this year, the University of Michigan Press released Field Manual of Michigan Flora (co-authored with Dr. Anton A. Reznicek).

Research, from front page

Gene Stoermer

Not only was Dr. Voss an internationally renowned scientist, but also a devoted conservationist and educator. Whether his students were undergraduate, graduate students, or dedicated amateurs, he shared his passion for botany with them with an equanimity of zeal. He will also be remembered for his ready wit, timely and clever puns, relevant comments in meetings delivered with an economy of words, and command of every nuance of the English language. He is survived by his devoted sister, Eleanor (Elly) Hendricks (Tom) of Dayton, Ohio, and nephews: Andrew Stephen Hendricks of Tempe, Arizona, and James Edward Hendricks of Dayton, Ohio. A fuller version of this obituary, as well as an article about the coincidence of Dr. Voss's death and the release of the new Field Manual of Michigan Flora is available at our website,

The number of species peaked in 1999 with 22. Ovenbirds and redeyed vireos have consistently been the most abundant species. By the time of his 2011 mapping, much had changed. Dead birches, having reached the end of their life cycle, lay rotting on the ground. The aspen canopy was approaching 60 feet. For the first time, James recorded evidence of forest succession: several species of pine saplings were present, as well as oak and beech saplings. He counted 53 territories (almost tying the record of 54 in 1999). He also noted evidence of large mammalian predators – bear, wolf, and mountain lion tracks – for the first time. Despite the many changes, he says, “Some of the wooden stakes [from 1947] are still there.” Lind began sampling Douglas Lake in 1971 when he was teaching limnology at the Station. He sampled three locations at multiple depths – focusing on the hypolimnion, the cool, lowest layer Owen Lind sampling in South Fishtail of water that does not mix with Bay surface waters – for a minimum of five times over several weeks. He was measuring the rate of eutrophication, a condition in which thriving organic matter uses up the water’s available oxygen. He sampled every 10 years thereafter, most recently in 2011, with help from Eastern Michigan University Professor Kristin Judd. He enlisted another EMU faculty member, Steve Francoeur, to collect an additional set of data in 2007, after zebra mussels arrived in the lake. Originally, Lind wanted to determine the impact of lakeshore land use eutrophication. His goal now is to assess how much the mussels affect both the lake’s eutrophication rate and its deep-water microbial ecology. James says the 2011 field season was his last with the project. Yet he is not finished with it. “The bird data has been analyzed and is complete. I now need to analyze the final vegetation data.” He then plans to submit his findings to a journal. Douglas James Lind published his Douglas Lake research in 1993. He will write another article on his post-zebra mussel findings, now that he has two seasons of data to include (a 2007 manuscript was rejected because it was based on only one year).



11 D 0 2 r u o To

onors: You ARE UM BS

P a u l Adams Diane Albright Douglas Alexander Linda & Steven Alexander John D. Ambrose Mary Amick Seth Ammerman Richard Anderson Barbara Andreas Joanne Arbaugh Susan & Thomas Atkins Elizabeth Atkinson-Foster Cathy Bach & Brian Hazlett Roger & Marilyn Bachmann Franklin & Jane Barnes Lorine J. Barry C. W. Bartholomai Doris V. Baxter Neil Beach Sandy Beadle John & Martha Beechler Ruth Appleon Bell Dolores Bender Gwen Bennett Sandra Berger Carol Bershad Nadyne Bicknell Jane Bishop Martha Blake-Jacobson Donald Blome Tom & Carmel Borders Thomasine Breher William & Treva Breuch Thomas Brock William M. Brown Jack & Peggy Burch Esther Buskirk Charles & Catherine Busuito Keith Camburn Martha & Michael Cameron Charles C. Carpenter Pete & Shari Clason Kenneth W. Cochran Arthur Wells Cooper Carla Corrado Irene Crum Hal & Anne D a v i s Mariann De Flon Margaret Deane Caroline Dieterle Michael C. Doherty Katherine Dombrowski Brenda Dorsey Laurie Latham & Keith Dostal Douglas Lake Improvement Association Floyd & Joanne Downs DTE Energy Foundation Paula Dorr Duffy G.E. Dunstan Eaton Charitable Fund Michael J. Eckardt Mark Elliott Sophia Holley Ellis Gail Emmert Kathleen Fahey Alicia Farmer William Fennel Richard Fidler Jim & Jan Fitzpatrick Charles & Nancy Forest J. Daniel Francis Luanne Frey Martha & Thomas Friedlander Doug Fuller Kirsten Gaither Janet Galbreath Micheal Gambel Kathleen Gasper Heather M. Gates David M. G a t e s Robert & Carol Geake Nicholas Gmur & Eloise Kandle Muriel J. Gould Jennifer Greenwood Mary Greer Sigurd & Jean Ann Gundersen Richard Gwizdz Michael Hamas Thomas Hartman Sarah Hartman Michael Harwood Joel Heinen C. Barre & Marion Hellquist Susan Hendricks Barbara & Jerry Hoganson Arthur & Nelda Holden Douglas Holem Robert Max Holmes Arch W. Hopkins Dria Howlett Paul Huizenga Edith Hurst Jaime Isaza Conrad & Nancy Istock Adelaide & Edward Jacobson Douglas James Michele Johnson Terry & Jane Johnson April Jones Barbara Jones Laura Beth Kao Dikran Kashkashian Tom & Julie Kennedy Susan Klco Russell Kreis, Jr. Gwendolyn Kuehn Robert & Jennie Kuster Gina LaLiberte Anne E. LaPorte Richard Larson Howard Learner Neil & Carolyn Leighton David & Judy Levick James S. Lombard Ingri G. Lombardi Cheryl Lyon-Jenness Susan Martinez Robert McCann Patrick & Laura McCarthy Susan McCarthy Megan McCulloch Marilyn McKenzie Andrew McNaught Theresa Meader Lawrence & Audrey Mellichamp Katherine & Ronald Meyer Jonathan Monroe Douglas & Susan Moore Dennis Morgan Dennis & Jayne Morse Joyce V. & K. Darwin Murrell Knute Nadelhoffer & Barbara Billings Jeffrey Newman Lawrence Nilson Jerry & Leslie Nyckel Margaret O’Malley Mary Orr Mark & Ruth Paddock Donald & Ann Parfet Nancy K. Paul Robert C. Peebles Joan B. Pepper Andrea Pesce Louise Bergmann Petering Pfizer Foundation Ronald Pilatowski Jeffrey Pippen Michelle Plaxton-Bracci Elizabeth Weaver Price Robert Rebar Elizabeth Rodgers Francis H. Ruddle Ann Sakai Robert Sanger Robert Sarver S.C. Johnson & Sons Samuel Scheiner Claire & Betty Schelske Robert Schoeller Mary Crum Scholtens & Family Sarah Schramm Doug & Nancy Schrank Gail Schumann Allen Segrist Sentry Insurance William Shepherd Stanwyn Shetler Roger Skrobeck Michael & Carol Smelt Clarence Smith Marilynn & Stan Smith Marjorie Smith Mary Jean Smitka Avery Springer Chris & Mary Sue Steffen Adolph Stadel Trust Rose Overstreet Stein Janice Stephens Martha Stockard Mary Ayers Stockard Joan Strassmann Emily Swan Fred & Avery Test Fund Bill & Julia Thompson Fred & Alyce Townsend Diane Tracy Catharine Tucker Edwin Vanderheuvel John & Elizabeth Verhoeven Clayton Waldorf Luise E. Walker Nancy illiams Walls Donald S. Warner Carol & Paul Webb Jonathan Wendell Thomas Wenke William P. White Mary Ann Whipple Robert Whiting Marshal D. Wied Don & Kathleen Wieland Joan Wilce Gussie Williams Brian Williams James Winsor James Wolf Larry Wolf Woman’s National Farm & Garden Association, Ann Arbor Branch James Wood Jack Young Carol Zellmer

Thank you!! 6

Istock Family Endows Student Scholarship In the summer of 1958, Nancy Lee Smith and Conrad Alan Istock met at the Biological Station as Ornithology classmates. Four years later, they were married. They commemorated their 50th anniversary by returning to the Station for FABS weekend last fall. They also made an endowment gift to UMBS to create the Istock Family Scholarship. Conrad said, “We want many young field biologists in the future to have the joys, learning and professional successes we gained from UMBS.” The Istock family has a long and deep history at the Biological Station. Conrad was a T.A. for several years while earning his Ph.D. from the University of Michigan. His academic career took him to the Universities of Illinois, Rochester, Arizona and currently as a Fellow at Cornell. He taught and did research at the Station periodically in the 1970’s and 80’s. The Istock daughters, Alice and Anne, had the good fortune of being “Camp Kids” and then members of the kitchen crew. Alice took undergraduate classes at UMBS in 1983. Reflecting on her UMBS experience, Anne recently wrote: I was fascinated by the students who were so excited about science and nature, didn’t shave their legs or faces, and said things like "No chicken embryos for me this morning, thanks." I loved it when that guy ran down the whole length of the station yelling "Aurora! Aurora!"in the middle of the night so we could all wake up and go outside to see the bright green northern lights in the sky. I loved the dark, spooky boathouse and the office building above it with Gary Williams’ photo of a mosquito biting through jeans framed on the wall. I loved the way the library and the labs smelled. I loved the way the rain sounded on the tin roof of the cabin.

Nancy and Conrad Istock celebrated their 50th anniversary during the UMBS FABS Weekend last September at the place where it all began.

The Istocks’ scholarship fund will help ensure that students can continue to experience all that is special about UMBS.

Register NOW for your Summer 2012 Mini-Course Mini-Courses will run from June 13 to June 17 at the Station. Registration forms and full course descriptions are available on the UMBS website, This year's courses are: • Aquatic Macroinvertebrates of Northern Michigan Lakes and Streams with Kevin Cronk • Birds of Northern Michigan with Mary Whitmore and Bob Hess • Wetland Ecology with C. Eric Hellquist


University of Michigan

Biological Station 2541 Chemistry Building 930 N. University Avenue Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1055 Douglas Lake Report Published by the University of Michigan Biological Station at Douglas Lake, Pellston, Michigan 49769. Campus Office: 2541 Chemistry Building, 930 North University Ave., Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109-1055. Phone: (734) 763-4461 E-mail: Web: Director: Knute Nadelhoffer Associate Director: Karie Slavik Š 2012 University of Michigan

The University of Michigan, as an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer, complies with all applicable federal and state laws regarding nondiscrimination and affirmative action, including Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. The University of Michigan is committed to a policy of nondiscrimination and equal opportunity for all people regardless of race, sex, color, religion, creed, national origin or ancestry, age, marital status, sexual orientation, disability, or Vietnam-era veteran status in employment, educational programs and activities, and admissions. Inquiries or complaints may be addressed to the University's Director of Affirmative Action and Title IX/Section 504 Coordinator, 4005 Wolverine Tower, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109-1281, (734) 763-0235, TDD (734) 647-1388. For other University of Michigan information call (734) 764-1817 THE REGENTS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN: Julia Donovan Darlow, Ann Arbor; Laurence B. Deitch, Bingham Farms; Denise Ilitch, Bingham Farms; Olivia P. Maynard, Goodrich; Andrea Fischer Newman, Ann Arbor; Andrew C. Richner, Grosse Pointe Park; S. Martin Taylor, Grosse Pointe Farms; Katherine E. White, Ann Arbor; Mary Sue Coleman (ex officio) Printed on 100% Post Consumer Recycled Paper If you would prefer to receive your next newsletter electronically, please let us know

Triaging 100 Years of Data by Kyle Kwaiser, UMBS Data Manager

Recently, we began the BART Legacy Project, an effort to ensure the publications, projects and data sets from the decade-long Biosphere-Atmosphere Research and Training program are not lost to time. This project, along with other recent archiving efforts, has demonstrated the need for a systematic method for valuing and prioritizing data archiving activities. What follows are candiate-criteria for use in valuing data sets. What other criteria would you (do you) use to value data sets? Feel free to send your thoughts to Kyle Kwaiser (UMBS Information Manager, Accuracy - How well do the data represent the true values of the target variable? Although expectations as to the requisite level of accuracy will vary, degradation of accuracy (barring other changes in the data set) should decrease the likelihood of archiving. Flawed methodology or miscalibrated equipment will often lead to low-accuracy datasets. Verdict: The higher the better Complementarity - In a word, do the data play well with others? Data sets that are highly complementary will likely see higher rates of re-use by researchers. Precipitation and temperature data are highly complementary because climate processes impact a wide range of biological and chemical processes. Verdict: More is better. Coverage - One may initially think greater temporal, spatial or taxonomic coverage is always desirable. However, an increase in coverage is

often accompanied by a decrease in resolution. For example, a survey of all invertebrates at a location may lack species-level identifications. When greater coverage and higher resolution are paired, as is the case for much of the sensor data from the AmeriFlux tower, the sheer volume of the data sets pose a challenge. Verdict: Inconclusive. Coverage does not provide a consistent metric by which data sets can be valued. Ease of Archiving - At some point, the amount of effort needed to properly document and archive a data set exceeds the benefit to be gained from guaranteeing its future availability. Data sets with complete metadata and few quality control needs should receive extra consideration for archiving. Verdict: Easier is better Uniqueness - A data set that is highly unique may be worth archiving because it includes variables not previously measured. Conversly, the data may be unique because others do not value the information! Common data may be useful in meta-analysis situations or they may just be redundant. Verdict: Inconclusive. Uniqueness may or may not be a desirable trait.

Spring 2012 Douglas Lake Report  

Newsletter of the University of Michigan Biological Station.

Spring 2012 Douglas Lake Report  

Newsletter of the University of Michigan Biological Station.