Naturally Curious Lense

I have yet to see signs of amphibian activity in or around my phenology place. I think it’s too rocky to support frogs or salamanders. Although there are not many trees in bloom with the exception of a few red maples in the area- moss and lichen have begun to coat some of the rocks around the river. The nearest edge is very close. It’s about 50 feet away from my phenology blog and is a relatively large road. It cuts Salmon Hole into a few fragments. There is definitely not enough forested area to support forest interior species. It’s too fragmented and there is a large river that cuts through the two sides of the forested area.

 

Spring Break: Dunnellon, Florida

I spent an hour snorkeling through a river in Florida observing wildlife. Rainbow River in Dunnellon, Florida supports a vast array of fish, wildlife, and plants. It contains different distinct natural communities, which I learned includes sandhills, flatwoods, upland mixed forests, and hydric hammocks.  Within these communities include oak, longleaf pines, magnolia, dogwood, redbud, and hickory trees. While snorkeling, I was able to observe cormorants dive and hunt for fish under the surface of the water. Other bird species residing in the area include swallowtail kites, ospreys and kingfishers. There was very lush vegetation around the riverbanks and the water was a comfortable 72 degrees due to the hundreds of natural hot springs that feed into the river.

Natural Community

Salmon Hole is a Riverside Outcrop. This community has ice and flood scoured bedrock and stream banks. It contains a small amount of scattered low upland herbaceous plants and ferns, with only a small variety of young tree species. Since Salmon Hole is situated along a small river, it would probably be good habitat for a few riverine and upland mammals such as otters, mink, and raccoon.

There is much more debris on the floor of the community. There are a high volume of sticks and dried out plants littered about. Salmon Hole seems quieter than before- there is not much human or wildlife activity. The soils are quite thin and eroded, probably from the rain Burlington has been getting lately.

According to Biofinder, Salmon hole has both uncommon plant and animal species, as well as some rare species. The RIverside Outcrop seems to be an uncommon natural community in Vermont and there are a few vernal pools in the surrounding area.

Winter Phenological Changes/Winter Twigs

Since my last visit in the fall, much has changed. There are no leaves on any trees and the only color on the landscape are the few winterberry bushes by the edge of the river. There is some ice cover on the bit of standing water towards the shore, but the river is mostly still flowing. However, it is a much more quiet stream than last visit. 

Deciduous Tree Buds: Red maple, Norway maple, Paper birch, Red oak, Basswood

Written Comparison

I have chosen to compare my spot in Burlington to one of the only green places in New York City, Prospect Park. It gets tons of human traffic and has a huge dog run- it’s considered the heart of Brooklyn. The park was designed by Frederick Law Olmsted. There are no straight paths, they all wind and are very characteristic of Olmsted’s other landscape designs. In comparison to Salmon Hole, there are a ton more invasive plant species. Among them are Japanese Pagodatree, English Elm, Sycamore Maples, and Norway maples. Unlike Salmon Hole, it does not have a river or flowing body of water, there are only man made ponds and lakes that are populated with invasive swans, ducks, and geese. There are many more shrubs and much more understory composed of sassafras and dogwood.

Both Prospect Park and Salmon Hole are surrounded by developed areas, so they do not have any kind of extensive wildlife. Prospect Park is home to squirrels, pigeons, raccoons, possums, and the occasional hawk. These two locations are used primarily for recreation. For Salmon Hole, fishing is the main activity that goes on while in Prospect Park there are bike and running paths, car passageways, and sports fields.

Event Map and Update

My phenology place seems to get grayer and grayer. As the trees become bare, the rock clearing becomes more of a focal point. Paper birch trees stand out in the gray/brown forested area. I hadn’t noticed them before.

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Sketch

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The thickness of the canopy has decreased. There is much more colorful leaf cover on the forest floor than the last time I visited. There is more gray area around the bedrock features than last week, when there was a good amount of green vegetation along the walls. There is no clear evidence of wildlife in my place that I have noticed so far.