Monday, September 28, 2009

Timmins Hiking Day

A great success!!

It was a fantastic day, the weather was warm, the people a delight! A very good turnout.

There was all ages and some great discussions about trees. Everyone likes trees. It was strange that we did not even see one bird. We were a little loud walking on the trails, but little birds usually do not mind. Wonder what they were doing.

Our GPS friend left us with this information:
Total distance 3.74km
Total moving time 54 minutes
Total stopped time 19 minutes
Moving average speed 4.2 km/h

For those of you missed Ontario Hiking Day - start planning for next year.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Feel like summer in the swamp.

What another great summer day in the forest! Yes I know it is fall, but it has been so wonderful the last couple of weeks.
I had the opportunity to walk up to a little pond this afternoon. I think I saw the biggest Northern Pitcher-plant I have ever seen.

One plant I looked into had a dead fly floating in the water inside the pitcher. You can see the fly in one of the pictures.

Is is actually fall, the tamarack is already turning yellow.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Cecropia Moth in Town

On the back of the Timmins Checklist of the Birds is a form that can be used to report observation you make in and around Timmins.

I was sent one of these forms with photographs. Real photographs came in the mail.

Thanks to another keen observer here in Timmins we add yet another species that has been seen in the area.

The moth is out of it's typical range which makes me wonder if the moth was blown here, or did the larval stage hitch hike into the area.

What more information? You can follow the links below.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Foresters in the Forest

Today I walked a little over 4km in the bush.
Much of that was slogging through cedar and alder. You must walk gently, so when you step into the black hole of muck you do not go deeper then your knee.

I always enjoy watching Roll'n walk in the deep muck of the swamp. I am sure he enjoys the coolness on his paws. It turned out to be a very nice day.

Today we were looking at drainage. The company and OMNR are very serious about protecting the water that moves through the forest.

What I learned today was one of the lads better half saw a snapping turtle the other day! Wow that is 4 snapping turtle sightings in the last 2 years, 3 of them this year. I will follow up when I have the exact location and I will try to look around the area so I can get a picture. My other entry about snapping turtles.

One of our discussion was around the bark coming off the cedar trees.
I wonder if anyone know why this happens. We were about 500 meters from the last group of peeling bark cedar I wondered about before in a previous entry.

The suggest I like is it happens in the spring, or fall. The tree has lots of moisture in it when a very cold night happens. The tree expands with the cold and causes the bark to split all around the tree. Best explaination I have heard so far.

If you can tell me more - I would like that!

We also were very close to a little hawk screaming in the forest. The blue jays I think were bugging the bird. Using the Dendronica bird identification program I am pretty sure we were hearing the broadwinged hawk.

A wonderful day in the forest!!

Care to comment boys?

New addition to the Timmins Honour Roll of Trees

Jack Pine


Red Pine

Added to the Timmins Honour Roll of Trees. I have been promised pictures will follow.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Sudbury is getting Greener - Slowly

Recently I was in Sudbury for a Saturday night, and a Friday night too. I was there for a Regional Local Citizen Committee Conference.

Our field tour on Friday afternoon was to look at the regreening of Sudbury.

Many years ago the mining of Sudbury metals created a ring of destruction around the mining complexes due to pollution coming from the mills.

Since the 1980's the regreening efforts have taken barren lands that could not grow anything and created lands capable of supporting vegetation. It will be many more years before the forest return the Sudbury basin, but at least the effort is being put forward.

Pictured below is what the ground has looked like over the last 50 years with nothing growing except some poor white birch and some mosses. Other picture is of ground that has had lime added to reduce the acid, seeded to grasses and clover and fertilized, then finally trees planted.

The white pine seem to be doing really well on the site. I hope over the long term the area is able to recover to again produce great trees that will create oxygen for all of us!

Do you want to plant your own tree or purchase a tree that will produce oxygen.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Tenacious Tree and white pine stump

White pine stumps. Two different time zones.

The other day where I was walking I came across two very large stumps. I know one is a white pine and I am pretty sure the second one is too.

Both the stumps are a result of the trees being cut.

The first stump is very old and has two spruce trees growing on top of it. Rotting stumps can make a good seed bed, but for spruce as the stump rots the tree will not be successful. Spruce like to be a little more grounded.

The other stump is of a more recent vintage. The stump is high, which would suggest a cross cut saw was used, but I think it was cut by chain saw with no regard to safe and proper felling technique.

Give it another 20 years and seed will germinate on this stump too. What I find interesting is the size of these stumps. White pine, I believe were a lot more abundant then they are now.

The very large white pine were important to the building of Timmins.

Forest companies in the area are doing a really good job of getting white pine back on the landscape. I hope one day we will see the many white pine again scattered close to town.

The Honour Roll of Timmins Trees has the biggest trees of each species in the area. the biggest white pine in the area is only 24 km down pine street.

The best time to plant a tree was 100 years ago, the next best time is today! Get a native tree and plant it today.

Fox in the Forest

Fox den in the forest under an erratic. Now that is something to write home about, or blog anyway.

I have driven by this hole in the wall of a sand edge. I just had to take a closer look. I asked Roll'n to stick his nose in the hole and tell me what he thought. He was not interested at all. I expect the hole has not been used for awhile.

I think it is a red fox den for a number of reasons, the biggest reason is the feathers at the entrance. Little while feathers of a bird, I am thinking ruffed grouse. Fox like bush chickens.

Den den is in a well drained spot with a very large erratic sitting on the top. I looking in the hole and took a picture of the roots pushing into the hole. . . . uuummm I wonder what lies just beyond.

To find out I reach in as far as I can and take a picture. Turns out it is empty as far as the camera can see. Good for me. Maybe I have seen too many movies, but it is never a good idea to stick your whole arm into an unknown tunnel.