Donald Walker, Ph.D., will discuss the use of mushrooms in filtering waste water runoff at The Rieck Center for Habitat Studies on Sunday, April 14. Walker is an assistant professor of biology at The University of Findlay and, along with his students, has set up a “mycoremediation” site at the Center.
The public is invited to discover what The Rieck Center for Habitat Studies has to offer and consider an individual or family membership. A gift to The University of Findlay in 1972, the site is 55 acres of diverse habitat that supports outdoor activities including hiking, bird watching and fishing. A building with a bird viewing room is also located at the Center and accessible to members. Annual memberships are $20/family and $15/individual.
According to Walker, “mycoremediation” is the use of gourmet edible mushrooms (or native mycoflora) to remediate a waste site. Agricultural fertilizers can accumulate in surface water runoff and enter into fragile aquatic ecosystems. The agricultural fields bordering a pond at The Rieck Center offer a unique opportunity to test the effectiveness of a mycofiltration unit composed of burlap sacks inoculated with oyster mushrooms. This process will not only remediate the waste water, but produce gourmet edible oyster mushrooms during the fall.
The April 14th Open House will begin at 1 p.m. with refreshments. Walker’s presentation is at 2 p.m. followed by a tour of the mycoremediation area at 2:30 p.m. Visitors are welcome to stay and enjoy exploring the property. There is no charge to attend the Open House.
The Rieck Center for Habitat Studies is located about three miles from Findlay at 17311 T.R. 166, Mt. Blanchard. (Follow Route 37 toward Mt. Blanchard and turn left on T.R. 166.) For more information, contact Dwight Moody at 419-423-0128.
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