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  • AASHE-STARS

The Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System™ (STARS) is a transparent, self-reporting framework for colleges and universities to measure their sustainability performance.

Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 50.57
Liaison Yaffa Grossman
Submission Date March 16, 2016
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

Beloit College
OP-11: Biodiversity

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Lindsay Chapman
Sustainability Coordinator
Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution own or manage land that includes or is adjacent to legally protected areas, internationally recognized areas, priority sites for biodiversity, and/or regions of conservation importance?:
Yes

A brief description of any legally protected areas, internationally recognized areas, priority sites for biodiversity, and/or regions of conservation importance on institution owned or managed land:

Newark Road Prairie is a wet-mesic prairie remnant of the extensive prairie that covered Rock County in presettlement times. It is the largest known wet-mesic prairie in the county. A moisture gradient across the site results in differences in species composition. In the center is a sedge meadow that becomes drier on slight slopes to near mesic conditions on the west. Stands of tall cord grass and blue-joint grass dominate the lower portions; big blue-stem, Indian grass, and switch grass dominate the higher ground. More than 100 species of prairie plants have been recorded from the site including cream wild indigo, rattlesnake-master, shooting-star, sneezeweed, prairie blazing-star, Michigan lily, compass plant, prairie dock, asters, goldenrods, and milkweeds. Newark Road Prairie is owned by Beloit College and was designated a State Natural Area in 1974.


Has the institution conducted an assessment or assessments to identify endangered and vulnerable species with habitats on institution-owned or –managed land?:
Yes

Has the institution conducted an assessment or assessments to identify environmentally sensitive areas on institution-owned or –managed land?:
Yes

The methodology(-ies) used to identify endangered and vulnerable species and/or environmentally sensitive areas and any ongoing assessment and monitoring mechanisms:

Each year the Nature Conservancy sends Beloit Colege a monitoring document for Newark Road Prairie. A summer intern in the Sustainability Fellows Program monitors hydrological cycles and patterns, as well as remediates the prairie from invasive species.


A brief description of identified species, habitats and/or environmentally sensitive areas:

Newark Road Prairie is an unplowed prairie remnant, one of the few in Wisconsin. 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.


A brief description of plans or programs in place to protect or positively affect identified species, habitats and/or environmentally sensitive areas:

Ongoing research, both student and faculty, provide the college with the programs necessary to maintain monitoring of the endangered, threatened, and other species, both flora and fauna. Examples include: 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 a student is conducting research on water use by native plants.


The website URL where information about the institution’s biodiversity policies and programs(s) is available:
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The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution and complete the Data Inquiry Form.