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Trelease Woods: Mapping a centuries-old forest (video)

Trelease Woods, a centuries-old forest on the cusp of Champaign-Urbana, offers lessons to students and professors alike at the University of Illinois. A fragment of a once much larger forest around the city of Urbana, the woods contain trees that are 400 years old and tell a story of the history of the area.

Through a partnership between the College of LAS and the College of ACES at Illinois, students are conducting a tree census throughout the forest, mapping between 45,000-50,000 trees. In addition to being able to be used for future research, the process is giving students a hands-on opportunity to learn about ecology and field work.

This project is part of a larger network with the goal to monitor forests across the world for changes. However, Trelease Woods is special. According to Jim Dalling, head of the Department of Plant Biology and an organizer on the project, “There’s probably nowhere else in North America where we have a century of data where we can look back in time and see how the forest has changed.”

Viewers interested in supporting the Trelease Woods project or in supporting research in plant biology can make donations on the Plant Biology website. For more information about Trelease Woods, Find more information about Trelease Woods, see the LAS News Magazine.

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Publication Date: 08/30/2019
Photo credits: Jesse Wallace, LAS