Rory Larson

BUILDING BOARDWALK

BUILDING BOARDWALK

It all starts with a plan and permit when wetlands are concerned, but the latest stewardship project at Macricostas Preserve simply involved maintenance on a previously approved stretch of boardwalk through Meeker Swamp.  Several sections had deteriorated after a decade of great use and needed replacing.  The beat boards were white oak, a good choice …

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SQUIGGLING AND SQUIRMING our way through SPRING

SQUIGGLING AND SQUIRMING our way through SPRING

It’s that time of year again when thrushes and warblers serenade forest dwellers, buds burst, and a rejuvenated environment even teases of summer with an occasional tree frog sounding off.  For Steep Rock Association, these cues trigger a certain stewardship action being the monitoring of our critically-important vernal pools. A balmy rain-soaked night has aroused …

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bobcat-steep-rock

#64

With snowshoes strapped, baggies at the ready, and GPS fixed, I head out into one of Steep Rock Association’s (SRA) preserves characterized as overgrown field rejoicing my career choices and the presence of such preserved land.  A cold-water stream runs through it.  Seeps percolate from tall grass and alder groves, wind past cedar trees, and …

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Cottontail species hunkered down in a hollow tree

PURSUIT for PELLETS

They’re not the easiest to obtain.  Stooping, crawling, and dipping through young forest, citizen scientists with Steep Rock Association (SRA) earned their cottontail scat (or pellets).  The native species, New England Cottontail (NEC), prefer this brambly habitat type over more open fields and meadows where the non-native eastern cottontail dominates.  Forest succession and interspecific competition …

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THE FUNGAL ARMS

THE FUNGAL ARMS

Essay and photos by Peary Stafford It’s January… and there’s precious little nature to study in Steep Rock.  Few birds, no insects and for sure no flowering plants.  But there’s always something and these desolate winter days, BK and I (OK, mostly I) have taken to investigating the fungal life of our beloved Land Trust. This particular …

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