- CT
- CT
Virtual, Zoom

Area of Interest

The Scuppernong Basin comprises more than 3,000 acres within the Southern Unit of the Kettle Moraine State Forest, including two State Natural Areas: Kettle Moraine Low Prairie and Scuppernong Prairie. These sites harbor high-quality examples of wetlands and support diverse native plant and animal species. Agricultural lands are interspersed around and within the basin. Land ownership includes Wisconsin DNR and private landowners.

The challenge

In the Scuppernong Basin, DNR property managers are confronted with many questions relating to climate change:  How will climate change affect my site? Are my goals still feasible with a changing climate? Should I resist change, accept change while promoting resiliency, or transform my site into something new? How can I achieve objectives, and assess if my actions are working?

Workshop purpose & objectives

In a facilitated workshop, participants will use the Adaptation Workbook structured decision-support process to intentionally integrate climate change considerations into management planning and activities for DNR-owned properties in Kettle Moraine State Forest that lie within the ‘Scuppernong Basin,’ a geological feature associated with ancient Glacial Lake Scuppernong.  This includes some state forest parcels plus two ‘embedded’ State Natural Areas (SNA) --  Scuppernong Prairie SNA and Kettle Moraine Low Prairie SNA. This will assist DNR property managers in the near term as they consider how to address climate change in their day-to-day management, as well as the larger state forest master planning process which is slated to begin in 2023.  Using this approach, the project team will:

  • Outline current baseline conditions at the Scuppernong Basin, including specific cover types, aquatic features, and taxa, and project area goals (either explicitly stated goals in existing plans or currently accepted standards)
  • Consider climate change impacts to the Scuppernong Basin, outline climate vulnerabilities, and describe how those vulnerabilities might influence specific cover types, aquatic resources, and taxa, and the ability to meet conservation goals.
  • Identify potential adaptation actions to address key climate vulnerabilities while meeting conservation goals and objectives, and review relevant climate adaptation strategies and approaches (forest, wildlife, non-forested wetland, grasslands, forested watershed, fire-adapted ecosystems).
  • Consider challenges and opportunities for managing ecosystems (particularly wetlands) across a large landscape.
  • Discuss how to monitor specific adaptation actions to evaluate success over time.  
  • Provide a platform for future engagement on the topic of climate change and adaptation within the Scuppernong Basin, the entire Kettle Moraine State Forest, and other properties in the Southeast Glacial Plains Ecological Landscape.


PRE-Workshop work

Before the workshop, kindly take some time to complete the readings linked below, as a self-study on relevant climate research available for Wisconsin. Please take ~ 1 hour to review climate impact & vulnerability information developed by WICCI that can inform Scuppernong SNA workshop discussions.

Suggested resources:  

  1. WICCI Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment briefs (~2 pgs): Forest (upland, lowland), Wetland, Grasslands.
  2. Pre-recorded video. We are recording a climate change presentation for the Scuppernong Basin and will email you a link before the workshop. Please set aside ~30 min to view this presentation before the workshop.
  • ** Optional **  If you have the time and interest, you can also review detailed assessments for various natural communities here (find: Southern Sedge Meadow, Emergent Marsh, Calcareous Fen, Shrub-carr, Wet-mesic Prairie, Mesic Prairie, Oak Opening, and Oak Woodland are found in the project area).
  • ** Optional ** Information on climate change and Fisheries, Wildlife, and Infrastructure is also available; if you interests align with those topics, you may like to review information on those webpages.  
  • ** Optional ** Review USFS Tree Atlas results for the Scuppernong Basin (43,88), see summary here.


Climate impact and vulnerability video presentation (by Amy Staffen, WI DNR):

Additional materials
Co-hosts and collaborators

Wisconsin DNR, Heritage program

Michigan Technological University, Northern Institute of Applied Climate Science (NIACS), USDA Northern Forests Climate Hub: