April showers bring May flowers! And what do Mayflowers bring? Pilgrims! Hahahahaha.
Well we haven’t had the most traditional of “April Showers” these past few days with intermittent icy rain storms. Though the weather is practically miserable, I am hopeful that it will turn for the best soon and we will be bathing in sunshine and 60 degrees.
This icy rain, however, did make it difficult to identify traces of animals in my phenology spot, so I was not able to find signs of amphibian life. There also was not too much indication of plants coming back to life for summer quite yet. While the buds do seem to be opening up a bit, these trees are still hesitant to face the fluctuating temperatures.
While not much has changed since my last visit to the woods, I am still observing what makes this spot unique. The location of this spot is quite interesting because it acts as a barrier between two highly trafficked areas. On one side, there is the UVM campus. Seeing that it is the far edge of campus, there are not too many people walking through these woods, but there are many signs of human impact such as litter that has blown away, and some more invisible effects such as oil runoff from the parking lots. On the other side of the forest is the Burlington Country Club. Again, there are not too many people walking into the forest from this side, but there are definitely impacts from the golfcourse such as fertilizer runoff.
These effects could greatly harm the composition of the forest and should be modified accordingly. As we know from the “March Madness” post from a little over a month ago, this area is a physical landscape, which means that its underlying geology does not change even when the landscape above ground is changing. These types of landscapes should be conserved and protected because they are very important in maintaining the composition of the larger surrounding landscapes. Work should be done to limit the impact on this area coming from both UVM and the Burlington Country Club. This forest is often only thought of as a landmark separating these two establishments, but it must also be respected and taken care of in order to protect the species that live within.