research2whiteThe Prairie Corridor project will help increase the knowledge base regarding the preservation and enhancement of a species-rich, resilient tallgrass prairie. Researchers hope to develop a better understanding of how composition, size and shape of various prairie areas contribute to diversity, resiliency, and species richness, and improve the understanding of habitat needs for pollinator species.

(Photo courtesy of David Murphy)

The University of Nebraska at Lincoln’s School of Natural Resources is a key partner in the project. The initial focus of research will be on pollinators and the design of the corridor for habitat diversity. There has been an alarming decline of pollinator species that has recently gained national attention, with action by the White House to expand Federal efforts to reverse losses and help restore populations to healthy levels. The Nebraska Wildlife Action Plan identifies loss of pollinators as a key stress specific to the Tallgrass Prairie Ecoregion. Research is anticipated to examine how to increase pollinator species in the design and management of prairie reconstruction, and to monitor plant and/or pollinator species abundance and richness as indicators of habitat that is most supportive of a high pollinator diversity (including honey bees, native bees, and butterflies).

Research will also explore how the composition, size and shape of various tallgrass prairie areas contribute to diversity, resiliency, and species richness and how the corridor can be best designed to further this diversity.