ORWRP in the News

This page is dedicated to highlighting news related to research by the Olentangy River Wetland Research Park and its researchers.


  • Article: Nightime Light Has Profound Impacts
    • Summary: Research is currently being conducted to see just how impactful artificial light at night is to surrounding ecosystems and habitats. While blue light is terrible for humans, artificial light impacts individual organisms, communities, and ecosystems. The research team examined the effect of existing artificial light in streams, and they manipulated the light in wetlands. In all cases, there was a canopy of trees and other vegetation overhead, buffering the light. From those areas, they collected a variety of ubiquitous water-dwelling and land-dwelling invertebrate species, including mayflies, water bugs, ants, and spiders. They found that species composition changed with increases in light intensity.
    • For the full article, reference click here.
  • Article: Research Aims to Predict Algae Blooms on Lakes, Rivers
    • Summary: Researchers across the state are working to better understand how harmful algal blooms affect Ohio’s rivers and reservoirs. Blooms on smaller bodies of water are less predictable than those on Lake Erie and still have harmful effects on communities. Researchers at the ORWRP are starting a multi-year project to investigate when and how often rivers, lakes, and reservoirs are likely to be hit with algal blooms. They aim to use water samples and land-use data to create a classification system for the waterways to determine potential risk and treatment plans.
    • For full article, reference click here.
  • Article: Reborn Olentangy becomes OSU lab
    • Summary:  Dam removals on the Olentangy near 5th Avenue, on the Olentangy near Ohio State, and on the Scioto at Main Street near Downtown are being researched for their effects. It is known that dams prevent fish from moving upstream, beyond the dam, and that dams can collect sediment which will reduce nutrient flow downstream from the dam.  What is not known, is how removal of low-level head dams will affect the behavior and ecology of the biota downstream.
    • For full article, reference click here.
  • Article: Biologist Bill Mitsch spent career at Ohio State creating world-class wetlands
    • Summary: Before the construction of the Olentangy River Wetland Research Park (ORWRP), the area was an abandoned agricultural research field. Since it was along the Olentangy River, it was prone to flooding and was known as the “Dodridge Bottoms.” However, with this area, Bill Mitsch envisioned the ORWRP and with the help of his ecology doctoral students, created two kidney-shaped wetlands. The ORWRP has provided an area where researchers are able to study how to replace wetlands that have been destroyed and is recognized as a wetland of international importance.
    • For full article, reference click here.
  •  Article: Letting nature run its course
    • Summary: Research done at the ORWRP has allowed for the determination of three key aspects that are needed to construct a wetland: cleared ground, water flow, and leaving the rest for nature. The research park consists of two kidney-shaped, man-made wetlands. To study the effects of human-managed wetlands and nature-managed wetlands, each of these wetlands was treated differently. One of the wetlands was planted with 13 species of plants that can be found in natural wetlands, and the other was left alone and allowed to grow on its own. Although the wetland that was left alone contained mostly cattails, which are considered to be invasive and indicate low quality, it was noted that the cattails were able to sequester more carbon than the plants that had been added to the other wetland.
    • For full article, reference click here.

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