Prairie Research

MPF has provided numerous small grants to researchers studying prairies, glades, and other native grasslands. In 2008, for example, MPF provided a small grant to Nicole Miller, then a Ph.D. candidate at Washington University, to assist with her work studying plant-pollinator interactions on Missouri prairies and glades.

MPF also allows researchers—with permission—to use MPF properties to gather data and carry out other scientific work. In 2010, for example, Lauren Hart, a graduate student at the University of Missouri-Columbia, compared insect communities in original tallgrass prairies, restored prairies, and fescue-dominated agricultural fields, as well as insect feeding interactions.

Results of these and other researchers’ work is often published in the Missouri Prairie Journal.

MPF’s annual Prairie BioBlitz also results in data collection and biological discoveries. For example, at the Penn-Sylvania Prairie BioBliz in 2010, 242 species of plants and animals were documented in less than 24 hours, including 133 plant species confirmed from a 1999 list plus 30 newly documented plants. At the Golden Prairie BioBlitz in 2011, Arkansas darters—a candidate for federal listing—were discovered in a small spring-fed prairie stream.