Evaluating Urban Natural Area Reconstruction and Management
Restoration of natural areas and native plant communities is challenging, especially in urban areas. Practitioners often rely on experience and anecdotal evidence when making management decisions to meet their goals. In constructed ecosystems, these rules don’t always apply. Monitoring species diversity and plant community composition is one way to quantitatively evaluate our restoration and management efforts, thereby allowing us to make more effective and efficient decisions. We'll explore native habitat reconstructions throughout Chicago and evaluate the plant communities and soil properties to help understand the ecological value of these urban nature pockets. These data will help us determine which areas have properties that may be hurdles to management success, management practices result in higher quality habitats, and ultimately, direct future efforts of ecosystem conservation in urban areas.