Permit me, if you please…

Aquatic Ecologist

A volunteer collects wood frog egg masses at Clear Creek, as part of a permit-sanctioned wood frog reintroduction program at Metro Parks.

One of the lesser known aspects of Resource Management’s work is the writing of research permits for a multitude of agencies and individuals. These permits keep track of research going on in the parks. While writing the permits is not terribly exciting, the research subjects cover a large range of topics from air quality to zebra swallowtails.

Most permits are for one or two years of research, while others are annual renewals that date back almost two decades, such as the Wood Frog reintroduction started in 2005. The original research started with Dr Heatherinton of OSU reintroducing wood frogs to Glacier Ridge, Sharon Woods and Blacklick Woods, in the form of eggs from Clear Creek.

Another long-dated permit is the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) research with Kathleen Knight. Kathleen has been monitoring and reporting back to the US Department of Agriculture and the US Forestry Service with EAB population numbers since 2008. Brian Zimmerman of OSU is in the third year of using a few Metro Parks ponds to rear darters for reintroduction in Metro Parks and throughout Ohio. No doubt, this will be a long-standing permit in the years to come.

So on those days when Resource Management is not out whacking at invasives, peeping at birds or doctoring on trees, we may be found banging away at the keyboard on a research permit. In fact, the permits du jour are the continued wood frog research, native bee nesting research, EPA water quality testing on Big Darby Creek, and a parasitoid release for EAB, in which researchers hope to identify bugs that will kill the emerald ash borer, but cause no damage to native trees or wildlife.

Volunteers transplant wood frog egg masses into the swamp at Blacklick Woods. The egg masses had been collected at Clear Creek, as part of a permit-sanctioned wood frog reintroduction program at Metro Parks.