Before Spring Break Visit!

            As I walked into my phenology spot the air was brisk and dry. The snow was hard, and it looked frozen and condensed. It was a sunny day, letting the sunshine through the leafless branches. As I looked around, I could Identify many Eastern white pine trees. They dominated the area. Oak trees, maples, and some beech trees were also sprinkled through the Eastern white pine trees. I categorized my area as a Northern Hardwood forest. This is because it contained all of the trees species I was able to identify. 

            As I continued walking through my area, I noticed many fresh tracks of animals. One looked as if it could be a striped skunk and another, a snowshoe hare.  I assumed one track was a white-tailed deer, and another I guessed was a porcupine. It was difficult for me to determine what these animals were, yet I assumed that they were small animals because of the size of their footprints. 

            The stream in my sight was half frozen, yet the water under it was still moving. There was still a thick sheet of snow in the area, and many fallen trees and snags were spotted. I could hear birds which made me assume that the forest was getting ready for spring to come. More footprints were identified than usual, helping to confirm the idea that animals were getting ready for spring to arrive.

            When I first visited my sight at the beginning of the year, the forest was in full growth. The trees were packed with leaves, ready to turn colors for the fall. The sounds of birds chirping were constant, and the understory was packed with many different species. You could identify the trees comfortably. Though I was not able to identify animal footprints in the fall, I knew that they were their flourishing. Animals were not in hibernation and insects were everywhere. Plants were flourishing in the understory, and the forest was in constant flow. Woodpeckers were commonly heard, and the movement of water could be detected in the air. The sounds of the leaves moving through the wind were common. The soil was moist and nutritious in most areas, and there were less fallen trees. I assumed that the soil was well drained because Eastern white pines do best in this environment. There was so much life going on in the forest. The hydrology in the area was good because of the high amount of water flowing through my space. Nutrition seemed to equally flow through the forest as trees continued to grow. Because of the history of Centennial Woods in terms of the deforestation that occurred for pastures, the trees that are growing today are relatively new. Each year they continue to grow. This would not be possible without the hydrology and the substrate chemistry in the area. 

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