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A hiking map of the area

https://www.uvm.edu/envprog/natural-areas/centennial-woods

 

With the new semester starting, I have decided to look at a new phenological location in Burlington. I really enjoyed observing the changes in the Redstone Woods but the area did not have as much wildlife and plant diversity as I would like to see. I have chosen to revisit a Centennial Woods, a place that I visited frequently in August and September.  The area looks a lot different than it did in the summer. Icy snow covers the entire ground in the woods now, the trees are barren and the streams are frozen over. The following is a gallery of some photos I took earlier this week. I observed some animal tracks and sorted through some twigs to identify some of the trees in the area.

Here is a google maps link of the location of Centennial Woods.

https://www.google.com/maps/place/Centennial+Woods+Natural+Area/@44.47781,-73.1867801,17z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m5!3m4!1s0x4cca7a4064285555:0xa16586518a8db548!8m2!3d44.47781!4d-73.1845861

Squirrel print up close.

Interesting pattern on a White Birch tree.

Dog print.

Buds on Red Oak twig.

American Beech twig

American Beech with leaves

Red Oak tree twig.

More squirrel prints

 

The Last Visit

It has been really great getting to see this area change throughout the phenological year. Back in August, when I first visit the Redstone Woods, the area was completely different. The pine trees were thick with green needles and the ground was clear and filled with green grass. Now, on my last visit, the trees look empty and the ground is filled with a thick layer of pine needles and on this morning there is a small sprinkling of white snow.

 

Redstone Woods is an area that people have been interacting with since UVM was built. Over the years students have used this area for recreation and in our case for education. It was interesting to come to this spot for the tree ID quiz because I was able to apply what I had learned in lecture to an area that I have enjoyed spending time in throughout the semester.

LOCATION: 

https://www.google.com/maps/place/Point+of+Woods+Park/@39.913293,-74.9595569,18z/data=!4m13!1m7!3m6!1s0x89c134b79ffe885b:0x95fc8f04c6f07df6!2sPoint+of+Woods,+Cherry+Hill,+NJ+08003!3b1!8m2!3d39.9095577!4d-74.9573896!3m4!1s0x89c134c9b1eb7a01:0x6f92d12eb3a24b28!8m2!3d39.9141287!4d-74.9593071

DESCRIPTION: 

Cold air moves around in a hurry, pestering the fallen leaves the make a loud crunching noise. The falling sun shines rays through the thinning leaves. Squirrels play and chatter with each other as small, earth-toned birds chirp above. Bamboo invades this space, trying to get along with the existing plants and animals. Water divides the two sides creating a barrier for those not willing to cross. Little critters find ways to get across the creek without getting their fuzzy fur wet.

The small children look in amazement. The Earth is so perfect. This place brings fascination. Changes are unpredictable which makes it exciting to come back. This place creates a burning desire to return. Brothers build forts with the branches that have fallen. They are respectful of the place leaving no traces that they have been using the land.

Our family loves this place because it is home. The place looks different but the feelings are the same. There is a comfort in this place that belongs to no one yet invites several visitors. Growing up in a place mostly made of steel and cement makes places like this one so special. There is an appreciation for the little things.

COMPARISON: 

The ecology and phenology of this place are very different from the Redstone Woods. The ecology of Vermont and New Jersey are not drastically different however, the differences are still noticeable. The weather on the day of my observations was clear and warm for the month of November. I happen to check the weather in Burlington on the same day and notices that New Jersey was over 10 degrees warmer than Burlington.

The trees that I observed seemed to be very similar to those in Burlington. However, the Redstone Woods is primarily pine trees and the park close to my house is primarily maple and oak trees. Another difference is the land formation. The Redstone Woods is in a very flat open area of land whereas the park near my house is carved out and very rocky from the creek that runs down the middle. The soil is moister on the ground while the Redstone Woods is currently very dry with a thick layer of pine needles covering the ground.

Also, because the park near my house is not located on a college campus the park’s visitors are much different. In the park near me, I see a lot of young children with their families as well as several older people walking on the path. Additionally, the park near my house has much more pollution whereas the Redstone Woods is well maintained. Both areas are used for recreation.

The “Far Far Away Park”

My childhood neighborhood has two parks. One of which is located just down the street from my house and the other one is about 4 blocks away. The further of the two parks was named the “Far Far Away Park” after I complained enough times that walk was too long for my 4-year-old legs. In my recent visit to this park with my family, I was shocked to finally realize how close the “Far Far Away Park” really is. The photos attached to this post are from my most recent visit to the park on November 24, 2017.

Another Visit to the Woods

A Poem

A Day In The Woods 

The Red Stone Woods are a fine place to be

if you stand tall like the white pine tree.

Standing tall, blowing in the wind each

each day they seem to be thinned.

The time passes by

as their branches reach to the sky.

Needles cover the ground

making small steps have a soft crunching sound.

Squirrels play the day away

knowing that tomorrow comes another beautiful day.

In my next visit to the Redstone Woods, things looked a lot different. The previously green grassy ground is not entirely covered with a thick blanket of orange pine needles. The covering of pine needles is between one to two inches so it has drastically changed the appearance of the area. This time I noticed more squirrels than my previous visits. I listened closely for the different sounds of the organisms in the area and heard a variety of birds chirping. I also noticed much fewer insects flying around than the last time I visited the woods. Bellow is a sketch of what an aerial view of the area would look like. There is a thick covering of tall pine trees so it is hard to see anything else.

 

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