|Thanks to volunteers, |
this trail is open,
but not for long in this weather.
It has been hot and wet! Steamier than I can ever remember July being and with more days of rain than in other Julys on record. I am sure there are those that have been really disappointed in the weather, but I will have to admit, I have been grateful for every drop because the plantings we have done at the Hoffman Preserve are thriving and we have not needed to constantly worry about watering them. That would have been truly challenging.
|Tall stakes and color-coded tape|
help us locate
small seedlings at Hoffman,
|One of the lovely |
|There is a trail in here |
On most preserves, everything else is growing like crazy too. Vines, briars and invasives all seem to be competing for space and in doing so, reach out into the trails! Many of the woodland trails are pretty hardened. Broad and open. They are shady pleasures during the hot summer. But some of the more open areas, meadows and thickets require attention. Our stewards are out and about trying to keep up with things, but the conditions are daunting! Feel free to hike with clippers and snip the encroaching vegetations. And we give our thanks in advance. The invasive species seem to be more robust and numerous than ever. Many of our volunteers will be doing some field research and identification studies to better learn how to manage these species which outcompete our natives and are not as valuable to our wildlife.
Over the last months, Avalonia has been growing as well. We have added acres of new land, now protected open space. Please keep checking the website for updates. Many thanks to those who donated to make the acquisition of the Sheets Preserve in North Stonington, a reality. Other new preserves are being studied to note wildlife, habitats, sensitive areas and points of interest. A management plan will be made for each one which will outline the goals and activities for each property. Boundaries will be walked and posted. Trails will be created, with safety measures or improvements as needed. The trails will be marked and then the areas will be opened to the public. All of this takes a lot of work and maintaining all of our properties is becoming a huge challenge, considering all of us are volunteers and most of us are not professionals in any area dealing with habitat management!
|Say hi to Toby when you see|
him on the trails!
Maybe growing our stewardship team will allow us to keep up with the growing vegetation!!
Hike safely and enjoy what summer has to offer.
|Many mushrooms look alike and|
it takes an expert to distinguish them.
|Beautiful but deadly Amanita.|
|A true beauty|
|Nothing appetizing about Dog Vomit Slime Mold.|