Hello, my name is Jessie Skalisky and I live on unceded Sugpiaq territory in Homer, Alaska, where I grew up. I’m a 21 year old sophomore wildlife biology student with UAF, and I’m thinking about minoring in marine science. I grew up gardening with my family, and have always had an interest in identifying the plants around me, although I’m not super knowledgeable. A main interest of mine is ecology, and the interactions of different plant and animal species to build a complex and beautiful web of relationships that builds the world around us. You can’t have wildlife biology without plant biology!

I’m currently working full time at a vet clinic, as well as doing a brief fieldwork traineeship in the Interior for the next couple weeks, so I’m hoping to try and get some classwork done ahead of time in case cell service and internet is hard to find. Despite my ordering a microscope that’s attachable to my phone, I’m not sure it will come in time, so I am going to make the best use I can of my phone’s macro lens for any delicate photos. I’m very excited to get a more in depth look at the plants around me through this class! One of my favorite plants is the Shasta daisy, they’re my mom’s favorite and they remind me of her when I see them. Of course, those are technically a cultivated plant. One of my favorite wild plants is a Venus flytrap. I think the adaptation of plants to become carnivorous is super fascinating, and they remind of my partner since they are from South Carolina. I included a picture I took last fall of some Venus flytraps in the UAF Campus Greenhouse. Excuse the camera quality, it was taken with my old phone!


  1. Welcome Jessie,
    yes, carnivorous plants are pretty amazing. There are all sorts, some with sticky traps, analogous to fly strips (sundews), of course the most famous, the venus fly trap. But one that is really cool is an aquatic plant. Folks in the Interior can find it in Ballaine Lake in Fairbanks. Common bladderwort (Utricularia macrorhiza) has a suction traps, and catch small prey animals using miniature underwater suction traps. At the front of the trap are trigger hairs that release stored elastic energy in the trap body accompanied by a very fast opening and closing of a trapdoor, which otherwise closes the trap entrance watertight and sucks in the small prey https://youtu.be/Zb_SLZFsMyQ Pretty amazing what plant can do.

    1. Jessie Skalisky

      You have no idea how exciting that is to me! I had no idea about these plants, I’m going to have to try to find some while I’m in the interior.

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