By Marie Zhuikov
Wisconsin is a state shaped by water. From its western border defined by the Mississippi River to two of the five lakes that make up the world’s largest freshwater system to its north and east, the state is awash in this valuable commodity. The interior is defined by more than 15,000 lakes scattered across counties both rural and urban, more than 5 million acres of wetlands, more than 84,000 miles rivers and streams and 1.2 quadrillion gallons of groundwater.
Two Wisconsin programs provide a statewide and multidisciplinary approach to supporting livelihoods and enhancing lifestyles through the research of, education about and outreach focused on those waters. These programs are the University of Wisconsin Sea Grant Institute (Sea Grant) and the University of Wisconsin Water Resources Institute at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
A new podcast series, Wisconsin Water News, highlights stories previously only available in print from these programs. Series Narrator and Science Communicator Marie Zhuikov brings the stories alive by featuring in-person and phone interviews of the people behind the news.
Three files are currently available, which are four to eight minutes long. In “Providing a Road Map for Aquaculture in Wisconsin,” Zhuikov interviews Chris Hatleb, professor of fisheries biology at the UW-Stevens Point, who shares a free online tool useful for people interested in starting new aquaculture businesses in Wisconsin.
“The Art and Science of Sturgeon,” gives listeners insights into a unique art project available for exhibit across the state. “Sea Grant Helps City Clean up its Zoning Code Monster,” features Mayor Jim Paine describing efforts the city of Superior is taking to make its community more sustainable.
The opening and closing ambient music for the series was provided by former Sea Grant podcaster, Chrys Bocast, from the piece EVA from her “Through the Airlock” album.
More stories are to come. Wisconsin Water News can be played and downloaded for free by visiting www.wri.wisc.edu/audio/.