Student Grants

Midwest PARC offers a travel grant to students to help offset transportation costs associated with participation in herpetological fieldwork with an experienced researcher. In 2021, 12 grants ($100) were awarded to students across the Midwest region! See below for application details and to read reports submitted by prior grant recipients.

We are no longer accepting travel grants for the 2021 season.

Stay tuned for future award information!

MW PARC Student Travel Grant
Spotted salamander (Ambystoma maculatum) by M. Youngquist.

Eligibility: Applicants must be an enrolled student (high school, undergraduate, or graduate) in good standing (≥ 3.0 GPA) or have graduate within 1-year of the application submission date and conduct herpetological fieldwork in the Midwest US with a researcher. Only U.S. Citizens or resident aliens are eligible due to federal regulations.

Applications: An application form that includes the student's name, address, contact information, and school information shall be required. In addition, the student shall provide  brief (one paragraph) explanation of the work they will participate in that the award will help support, the number of anticipated field visits, and total mileage. Each application must also include the name and contact information of the researcher(s) the student will be working with and affirmation from the researcher(s) stating they agree to work with the student, can confirm good academic standing, and is supportive of the student's application for a MW PARC Fueling Student Field Experiences grant.

Awards: Each award will consist of a $100 award to be used by the student to offset transportation costs associate with their participation in the project. The number of awards will be decided by the MW PARC Co-Chairs based on available resources each year.

Paolo Speziale landscape.jpg
2021 Recipient: Paolo Speziale

Click here to read about Paolo's work with amphibian and invertebrate larvae in ephemeral wetlands in Illinois.


Note: Details regarding field sites have been removed to protect those populations of amphibians and reptiles. 

2021 Recipient: Danielle Galvin

Click here to read about Danielle's work with amphibians and ranavirus. 


Note: Details regarding field sites have been removed to protect those populations of amphibians and reptiles. 

2021 Recipient: Katherine Brandewie 

Click here to read about Katie's work with turtle communities in a large urban wetland complex in Fort Wayne, Indiana. 


Note: Details regarding field sites have been removed to protect those populations of amphibians and reptiles. 

Recent Publications

Field Guide to Amphibian Eggs and Larvae of the Western Great Lakes

You can purchase the pocket field guide by Gary S. Casper, Thomas G. Anton, and Ryne D. Rutherford from our MW PARC store. Get your copy by clicking here!


Midwest PARC project teams and members collaborate on products throughout the year. Our goal is for these products to be practical and help advance our understanding of amphibian and reptile conservation and management.

Check out MW PARC products by clicking on the links below.

Field Herpetology Etiquette

Searching for reptiles and amphibians in their natural habitat can be an educational and rewarding pastime. However, over-collecting for the pet trade, habitat destruction, and emerging diseases are all very real threats to our herpetological fauna. Before you venture out, please consider the following tips. It is our responsibility to protect both the animals and their habitat.

Download a PDF of MW PARC's Field Etiquette.

Cover image of Habitat Management Guidelines for the Midwest
Habitat Management Guidelines, 2 ed.

Habitat alteration, fragmentation and loss are collectively considered to be the primary challenges to the viability of many populations of amphibians and reptiles (herps). In 2002, Midwest PARC was the first region to publish a regional habitat management guidelines (HMG) book for amphibians and reptiles. This award-winning series now covers most of the United States, providing proactive guidance for improving the compatibility of land management practices with herps in mind. The Midwest HMG was revised and expanded in 2012.

Download a PDF of The HMG for the Midwest.

Blanding's Turtle Conservation Assessment 2010

The Blanding's Turtle (Emydoidea blandingii) is a medium-sized freshwater turtle documented from 10 of the 14 states in the Midwest. The 2010 MW PARC meeting focused on the biology, conservation, and management of Blanding's Turtles, which is where the results of the Conservation Assessment Survey were first presented. 

Download a PDF of the 2010 Blanding's Turtle Assessment.

Fire and Herps 2008

Prescribed fire is a useful tool for helping to manage habitat by impeding successional change and controlling invasive plants. Consequently, it is also valuable for increasing suitable habitat for amphibians and reptiles. Under some circumstances, though, fire can also be damaging to resident populations of reptiles and amphibians. In response to discussions at the 2008 annual meeting, MW PARC developed this white paper outlining the concerns and recommendations for prescribed burning and herps. David Mifsud (DMifsud@HerpRMan.com) was the leader of this task team.

Download a PDF of the 2008 Prescribed Burning Guidelines for Amphibians and Reptiles.

Raccoons and Herps 2008

Increased populations of subsidized predators can have detrimental effects on some herp species. In response to discussions at the 2008 annual meeting, MWPARC developed a white paper outlining the concerns and recommendations for dealing with raccoons. The leader of this task team was Kent Bekker (kbekker@gmail.com).

Download a PDF of the 2008 Raccoon and Turtle Conservation document (and associated literature).

Turtle Regulations 2008

In response to discussions about turtle regulations at the 2008 annual meeting, MWPARC conducted a review and comparison of the state regulations governing turtles in the Midwest. 

Download a PDF of the turtle regulations as of 2008.