One Last Visit

May 6th, 2017

As my first year at UVM comes to a close I feel very nostalgic, remembering in August the feelings of fear and excitement that all of us First Years felt. Now that it is May and we are newly arising Sophomores that feeling has begun to fade, and our confidence has started to blossom. As I walk to Centennial Woods one last time, I feel a certain sadness in me. NR 1 & 2 have been our ways of finding out more about Vermont and learning as we explore, ending this phenology assignment is the last piece of NR to say good bye to.

Arriving at Centennial Woods, it was rainy and wet as most spring days are here in Vermont. Spring has made its mark though with all the buds blooming and the green coming though. Amphibians were found in the leaf litter and trees are beginning to come back to life. Culture is found in Centennial Woods through UVM, it is land that is owned by UVM and all NR students were introduced to this place when we first arrived here in the fall. It is a place that most students and faculty at UVM know and love, while also being a place for anyone in Burlington to come to and just explore. To me that feels like a lot of culture and love for this area. After spending this last semester at Centennial Woods I feel like it would be quite vain of me to say I feel part of this amazing area. I feel I have been able to connect with it and found it a place to go when I needed to destress or just be alone for a little while. Centennial Woods will always have a place in my heart and I hope on day I will have the privilege to call myself part of this place.

Spring Awakening

April 14th, 2017

As I visit my site, Centennial Woods I can feel the spring life coming into full bloom. If you look closely you can see bugs of all types coming back to life, some earth worms from the recent rain and maybe even a salamander making its way through. After seeing this your eyes are drawn to the newly budding flowers that are seen under the leaves that have begun to decay over the winter months. Although no trees show signs of life, I’m sure that the trees will be next on the list to make their reborn appearance after the cold winter months. I would consider the nearest edge Centennial Woods the main road that runs very close in proximity to the forest wonderland. The edge effect there seems pretty minimal in respect to other areas around.

Wildcat Falls – Spring Break

Phenology March 22nd, 2017

Going home is always such a special and memorial time, remembering all the times spend in outdoor places. One of these places for me was Wildcat Falls, this beautiful place reminds me of Centennial Woods in its location. They are both found tucked away from the busy streets of an active town and city, you go there and you feel like you are in a whole new world. One of the main attractions though in Wildcat Falls in the running water and water falls that surround you. Centennial Woods is where the trees are the highlight and there are main more wildlife species that are seen in this area.  “Originally owned by the NH DOT, the land was sold to Merrimack in 1970 for $1.00. Wildcat Falls Conservation Area contains 87 acres of managed pine/hardwoods forest, by the Souhegan River and includes Wildcat Falls, a popular area. A portion of the Heritage Trail system extends from the entrance to the falls.” “A PSNH power line crosses the land and provides an excellent area for bird watching and wild blueberry picking. An area cleared of trees as the result of a forest fire provides excellent views of the Souhegan River and an opportunity to watch for American kestrel and other wildlife.”

Wildcat Falls Conservation Area. (n.d.). Retrieved March 21, 2017, from

Centennial Woods Community

March 10th, 2017

My phenology site has been going through a lot of changes over the past couple of months, due to both the very strange weather conditions lately and the rise of spring. The weather in Vermont over the past couple of weeks has been strange in the sense that it would get incredibly warm, in the high 50s – 60s sometimes even 70s and then the next day it would drop down to the 20s and 30s again. Centennial Woods has gone through a cycle of thawing and freezing over so many times that it has become a strange state. There is now a little bit of snow on the ground but also green has started to come through, animals have made themselves present and then had to hid away again to get out of the cold. Vegetation is still in its hibernation and hasn’t started to bloom again but it seems to be starting to move into spring and is showing early signs of coming back to life. Using Wetland, Woodland, and Wildlife I would classify Centennial Woods as a small to large patch of woodland land with a S3 community as most of the species and parts of the ecosystem seem to be fairly common and plentiful in the Vermont community. BioFinder says that Centennial Woods is a habitat hotspot with lots of animal species living in and around it and is a fairly well protected place from human development. This is mostly due to UVM’s conservation effort in preserving it for educational and sustainable use.

Moving to Centennial Woods

February 6th, 2017

I decided to move my phenology blog to Centennial Woods because of my resent move from Redstone to Jeanne Mance. The snow has been pretty thin this year so the search for prints wasn’t very successful, I did see a few squirrels around and other rustling in the bushes. The trees were also very bare but still had some life in them. The twigs were covered in little amounts of snow and the path way had a nice feeling of the crisp winter and snow flurries. I found trees there like Beech, Eastern white pine, Hemlocks, Yellow and White birch.,-73.1867748,17z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m5!3m4!1s0x4cca7a4064285555:0xa16586518a8db548!8m2!3d44.47781!4d-73.1845861

The History of Place – Redstone Quarry

Redstone was once a very popular building material not only for its elegant look and durability, but also because it was readily available at a small quarry within the city limits. Redstone Quarry provided materials for the city of Burlington in the 1800s which means it was the most efficient material to be using during that time.  In 1958 the university purchased the three acre Redstone Quarry to use primarily for geology classes,  Redstone Quarry, however, is not just a place to observe rocks; it is a small yet diverse ecosystem. Although it was once severely altered by people this quarry has been left untrammeled to return to a somewhat natural state. While it lacks developed trails there is still plenty of area for people to explore and see the lovely sights, there are also plenty of areas for people to walk and hike around.  The area is noted for its diversity of birds and amphibians. Redstone Quarry might not be the most developed or established natural place but I think that adds to its overall charm and interesting history. You feel like you are the only one with nature there and you could never tell that it was once used as the site of providing for the city of Burlington.

Merrimack, NH – Wildcat Falls

November 28, 2016

Wildcat Falls [Personal photograph taken in Merrimack, NH]. (2016, November 22).

While I was home I chose to visit the Wildcat Falls Conservation Area which is only about 2 miles from my house. I enjoy coming to this place because it is so peaceful and relaxing as there aren’t many people that know about its location. There is a short hike before you get to the main attraction which is the water falls and rapids that gush throw rock layers underneath. The area is surrounded by an assortment of trees that I was now able to identify after taking this NR1 course. It is a nice place to bring a book and maybe a little lunch and just admire the great outdoors. The photo above is from where I was sat on a nice rock admiring the rapids of water flowing down the rocks.

Wildcat Falls [Personal photograph taken in Merrimack, NH]. (2016, November 22).

When I first went to the falls I realized there were some obvious differences in the landscape, most prevalent is the rushing water that is the main aspect of Wildcat falls. Although I did notice that the rock that that layered the bottom of both areas seemed fairly similar. Although the Redstone Quarries had many uses of the rock for construction around the Burlington area, the history of Wildcat Falls is much less related to constructional use but more recreational. The History of Merrimack notes that the falls were originally known as Atherton Falls due to the location of a dam located in the area – no indication of the structure remains – before it became know as Wildcat Falls at a time and for a reason not recorded. Originally owned by the NH DOT, the land was sold to Merrimack in 1970 for $1.00. For many years it was known as “80 Acres” until in 2009 the Town Council renamed it to reflect the natural feature that attracted many of the visitors – Wildcat Falls.


Event Map & a Poem

November 7, 2016

For this post of November 7th I wrote a poem to describe my phenology site as the weather gets colder and things begin to change. It was very breezy when I traveled there and saw that the trees had changed color and were beginning to fall. Many of the vegetation has died away as the weather gets cooler and the birds have for the most part departed for the South.

Event Map

This Event Map was drawn on November 6, 2016, to describe my journey and feelings while in my phenology site.

An original Poem:

Where the Wild Things Go

Layers in the rocks

Cracks in the slabs for life

Around trees losing leaves

A poem by me: Shaelagh Nelson

Birds Eye View of the Quarry

November 7, 2016fullsizerenderI do apologize for my terrible ability to draw art, I hope this picture gives you a good representation of Redstone Quarry. There are lots of residential housing surrounding the quarry, but along with that there is lots of trees and small vegetation surrounding. There is some pigs and ducks that live with a family right around the quarry, but besides that I haven’t seen many other signs of wildlife besides a few birds. The rock layers are very fascinating to look at and examine, I’m hoping soon I can determine the age of this area from the rock formation.

Arriving at the Redstone Quarry

November 28, 2016
img_1458Redstone Quarry [Personal photograph taken in Burlington, VT.]. (2016, October 16).

I was very surprised when I first arrived at the Quarry as the location was right at the end of a neighborhood so I was hoping I had made it to the right stop. Living on Redstone campus I thought picking my Phenology site at the Redstone Quarry would both be an easy walk and maybe teach me a little about the area around my dorms. I left on to South Prospect Street and then went down Ledge street which was much easier going done than it was coming up, eventually I made it on to Shelbourne Road and after a short walk I turned left on to Hoover Street and arrived at the Quarry at the end of the street. It was very interesting to see the rock that covered the floor of the Quarry and all the lose rocks and succulent type plants that were growing out of the cracks in the rocks. There was also quite a bit of moss growing and tall grasses found among the rocks. If you look over head they are great walls of different sections of rock that show a great history. I found that the most common trees found around this area are Sugar Maples and Eastern White Pine, also make sure to be aware of the ducks that run around the area, I promise they are friendly!


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