Fearsome Phragmites? Grad student explores exotic, native species

A UW-Green Bay alumnus and current master’s student is investigating a much-maligned invasive species in Green Bay’s backyard — and exploring the idea that efforts at eradication might not be what’s best, after all. Matt Peter, a 2011 graduate of the University’s environmental science program, is working to broaden the knowledge of Phragmites on Door County shores, studying not just the loathed invasive plant, but also the native species. Extensive efforts to kill exotic Phragmites could have important implications for the native plants, as well, Peter says. He’s working with The Nature Conservancy to study the differences between the two and how each responds to various natural stimuli. Our new feature story has more.