Friday, July 20, 2012

Tree seedling survival research

Ever notice those little orange flags and fencing about halfway between the caretaker's home and the gate near the satellites? That is one of PhD student Ben Connor Barrie's research plots! He is looking at the impacts of the surrounding landscape on the growth and survival of 8 native and 2 invasive tree species in forest patches.

He has planted seedlings in 4 forests along a 40-km urban-rural gradient in Southeast Michigan (Stinchfield being one of his 4 research sites). Within each forest site, he planted seedlings along another gradient from the forest edge to the forest interior. So far, he found that invasive species had greater survival closer to urban centers while shade tolerant tree species (think Sugar Maple) had higher survival in the rural forests.

The title of his first completed experiment is "The Impact of Land-uses on the Recruitment Dynamics of Tree Species." He still has a few more years of research ahead of him he will have more results to share with you!

Friday, July 6, 2012

Thank you for your cooperation!

Over the past two years, we have attempted to enforce the "dogs on leash" rule. We wanted to provide safety for all visitors (both human and canine) to Stinchfield without scaring people off with our enforcement. We have observed a great amount of cooperation and we wanted to thank you for it! Your respect for the rule has not gone unnoticed. Please keep up the good work! With your cooperation, there will hopefully never be another attack or lost dog again! 

Annual events

We are often asked what happens here at Stinchfield. Well we compiled a little list to give you an idea of who uses the woods and for what purpose.
  • Friends of Stinchfield Group organizes an annual litter clean-up of the surrounding roads in April (all welcome to help out)
  • Boy Scouts have orienteering exercises multiple times per year
  • Soil Ecology, Woody Plants, and Biology of Fungi courses from the University of Michigan take annual field trips in the fall
  • A local church meets on Easter Sunday
  • Cross country runners from a local highschool meet at the observatory for group runs
  • Mushroom Hunters Club has an annual outing in the fall
  • Breeding Birds Survey is conducted by volunteers annually in early June
  • University Lowbrow Astronomers hold multiple public events each year where you can view the stars through telescopes
In addition to these annual events, there are multiple research projects located in the woods and students and researchers often use the woods for various educational opportunities.