Monthly Archives: October 2019

Phenology Log #3

Date of Visit: October 29, 2019, Time: 11:29am, Weather: Cloudy and windy (13°C)

My site is a transitional area from developed land to a natural area. So the organisms living there are vegetation and wildlife that can stand and thrive in both environments, I was able to find wildlife such as the Eastern Chipmunk and then 2 different species of birds, one of which I photographed, the black-capped chickadee, and one I was only able to record the sound of. I was also able to find small forms of vegetation such as camphorweed, which is a small yellow flower, the eastern daisy fleabane, a small white flower and a type of fungus that was growing on a tree, unfortunately I can’t seem to find a name for it. And the two flowers that I was able to find during my trip are known for living and thriving near disturbed places. Which shows that the area has been touched by humans and has become a transitional site between human to a natural area.

The black-capped-chickadee I was able to photograph
The eastern daisy fleabane
A fungus growing on a dead tree that has lost its leaves.
An eastern chipmunk
The crying of an unknown bird I was able to hear. Unfortunately, I was not able to get a clear look at the bird species.

From the last time I visited the location, the biggest difference I saw were the trees that had little to no leaves, the boxelders, in particular, had no leaves at all left on their branches and they were all scattered around the ground around them. The only leaves that were left on the trees were the Norway Mapes and small short trees towards the entrance of the Centennial Woods Trail. Another big difference was the small short trees at the beginning of the trail that was pushed out towards the open area. Their branches were slanted towards the open area which may have been caused by the winds pushing the trees in one direction. Even further down the open area, trees and fern-like plants were slanted in the direction of the winds that were blowing. Wildlife was also very minimal in fact I saw no squirrels or chipmunks, and I did not hear any birds that day but that may have been due to the weather that day. The ground was also a weird dull color that may have been due to the abundance of dead leaves that were on the grass. The grass was covered in shriveled brown leaves and grew basswood like leaves. The opening at the deeper part of the open area was also bigger and had more grassland which also may have been due to the winds and possibly the rain that happened a few days before.

The leaves were almost all gone from the trees apart from the bushes at the entrance.
Short-slanted plants that may have fallen due to the strong winds.

In terms of the soil and its topography, the open area had a lot more dry mud covering the ground this also includes the beginning part of the trail to Centennial Woods. And this could be due to the rain that the days preceding my visit had. The area also still had signs of human activity with the fallen branches being all located in one place but more were scattered around due to the storms and strong winds that were occurring during that week.

Leaf litter mostly of boxelder leaves
More life litter mostly comprised of basswood-like leaves and norway maples

Prior to this visit, I created a map, as seen below, and this helped me gain a general idea of what areas I was most unsure of had. This then helped me take a closer look at what type of vegetation and what other things of interest there are. It helped me divide the area into smaller sections of what to expect and what to look out for. Such as the boxelder trees that seem to house more wildlife like squirrels and chipmunks than the other areas. One of these things of interest that I found were berries that I had not witnessed before. Unfortunately however, I was nto able to identify the berries or what kind of tree they were growing on. This also helped me find areas that I felt were most important such as the boxelder tree right in the middle of the opening towards the end and the opening at the very end which housed a lot more small vegetation and wildlife, as mentioned before, than I remembered. The map helps me more quickly find out what is new to the area from the last time I remembered and thus helps me make better observations based on the time of year.

Berries I found on my trip
My field notes
The map I created prior to my visit with added landmarks and organisms

Until next time!

Phenology Log #2

Date of Visit: October 9, 2019, Time: 1:12pm, Weather: Sunny, kinda warm (14°C)

The place that I have chosen is a small valley like location that connects the Centennial Woods and the housing suburb that is right next to the Centennical Woods. It is an open area that has a slope to it that can almost act as a small watershed for any runoff that comes from the suburb nearby and the Centennial Woods which is very different to the surrounding area. Although the area is right next to a small housing area it is very quiet. Once you go deeper down the open area towards the back, more and more species of trees and small plants can be seen such as small yellow flowers on the floor and you are able to hear different species of birds too (I counted 3 the day I went). The ground, on the day that I went, was covered with leaf litter. As can be seen on the pictures below.

This particular area was particularly interesting with so many fallen branches of trees on the ground creating something resembling a damn or a small wall of branches.
This open area was filled with leaves of different kinds, maples (mostly norway maples) and basswood leaves were most abundant.

During this time, you are still able to see and hear leaves falling down and there is a still a large majority of leaves on trees still. There are also also chipmunks, flies, and butterflies still going around the area.

Here’s a picture of a chipmunk that I came across nearby.
Here are notes I took during my time there.

Until next time!

Phenology Blog #1

Welcome to my NR001 Phenology Blog where I will post my journal entries for my chosen natural spot. My spot is located right outside the Centennial Woods Entrance, it’s the large opening thats inbetween the houses and the Centinnial Woods. I will be journaling about the different ecological phenomena that would or is occuring in the area over a large period of time.

Here are initial photos of the area I have chosen. (Date: October 9, 2019, Time: 1:12pm)