Here's another guest post on this semester's stewardship efforts.
On September 22, our lab time was spent in the Lake Katherine Nature Center along the Cal Sag River bike path. The topography of the land we were working at was a rising, man-made hill covered in prairie grasses and small trees. When constructing the Cal Sag channel, the developers brought the dirt, top soil, and other parts of the natural habitat up out of the riverbed and onto where it is today, creating a bluff. The prairie land, therefore, is not natural. However, the Lake Katherine environmentalists have worked to create a natural habitat using organisms native to the area.
We were tasked with removing all invasive species from the area. These species are not Illinois native plants, but do extremely well in these conditions. Because of this, they take off and intrude on the native species, crowding them out of the ecosystem. Plants like honeysuckle and buckthorn were among the invasive species we were trying to get rid of. By using our hands and clippers, we cleared out the prairie land for a couple hours.
It was an important task for us to partake in because it showed the community the service that we as Christians should look to practice daily. It displays that environmental stewardship is important as worshippers of the Creator, and that we are willing to donate our time and effort to help manage the environment.
I'm a biology professor at Trinity Christian College. I'll be using this page to share interesting stories related to ecology and conservation at Trinity and in the Chicago area (although I might be tempted to expand my geographic focus upon occasion).