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Monday, January 25 • 11:40am - 12:00pm
Mannomin Zizania Spp. (Wild Rice) Species Habitat Variables and Monitoring

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AUTHORS: Allison Smart*, Little River Band of Ottawa Indians; Stephanie Ogren, Grand Rapids Public Museum; Scott McNaught, Central Michigan University

ABSTRACT: Wild rice Zizania spp. (mannomin) is a culturally significant plant to Tribes throughout the Great Lakes Region. Concerns about mannomin populations lead to collaboration between Little River Band of Ottawa Indians and Central Michigan University to investigate wild rice habitats in Michigan. There are two species of wild rice native to Michigan. Z. palustris is found growing in both peninsulas, while Z. aquatica is only located in the Lower Peninsula. With recent interest and multiple restoration attempts, questions regarding ecological requirements for healthy populations and differentiation of the two species in Michigan have arisen. We sampled 20 locations with wild rice site present throughout Michigan to determine possible differences in abiotic parameters based upon species present and geographical regions within Michigan. Sites with Z. aquatica present had higher nutrient concentrations and conductivity, and lower pH and a greater proportion of catchment agricultural land use than Z. palustris sites. Northern, Central and Southern Geographic regions of Michigan were delineated by differences in, nutrient concentrations; conductivity and catchment land use classifications. Areas with Z. aquatica had higher conductivity than areas with Z. palustris. This study suggests that varying conductivity throughout the State has implications for wild rice populations specifically in the context of restoration. As planting and restoration plans move forward continued monitoring to determine annual and large scale changes to wild rice beds is a strong component of the wild rice program at LRBOI. This work will help determine potential changes to local wild rice beds over time as well as success of future restoration attempts.

Monday January 25, 2016 11:40am - 12:00pm EST