Prompt 2

Map and Charismatic Species

During my most recent visit to Centennial, I noticed drastic changes since my last visit which was just seven days prior. The ground is nearly completely covered in leaves, the colors in the forest have changed from predominantly green to yellow, and the branches are looking barer. Here are comparisons from my very first visit to my most recent visit.

I’ve also noticed that as time goes on, the soil near my location has changed in texture. In late September, when I began to track the phenology of this site, I recorded the soil to have very dry and compacted soil. I’m now finding the soil to be damp, loose and “mushy.”

On my most recent visit, I found it challenging to even find an animal but, I have previously found my location to be a hub for blossoming life.

Japanese encephalitis mosquito which has been rapidly spreading in the New England area.
Honeybee (Apis mellifera) pollinating flower in late September
Fowler’s Toad (Anaxyrus fowleri) which has been endangered since 2015. The pale white line forming down the back indicates it is an older toad.
Common Garter Snake found within 200 feet of the site

I have also seen birds and chipmunks near my site but, have not been able to capture photos or videos of these creatures. I feel that all six of these organisms embody my location because while they are not directly related, they all are apart of an ecosystem that functions and thrives off of these animals coexisting near my location.


I created this map and now have a deeper appreciation for my site. I have always considered my site to dominate in Black Cherries but, after mapping my site, I noticed the surrounding area to actually very dominate in Eastern White Pine, Northern White-Cedar, Eastern hemlock, and other conifer trees. Also, I thought my site was large in size but, seeing it from a birds-eye view, the location I picked is very small. I am now very intrigued and excited to explore more of Centennial Woods to see what other hidden treasures are buried inside.

Below is my most recent journal entry:

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