Book Talk and Walk V: Recap

Our fifth event turned out to be a successful one. After a nasty wintery day from a nor’easter on Saturday. A storm that dumped a lot of snow north and west of us. We had a beautiful fall Sunday afternoon for our program. We had about 15 participants, our largest turn out so far. We had some good discussion and everyone seemed to enjoy our snacks. Our walk was a good ramble through the woods of Caleb Smith. We saw several fine trees and a few recently cut down trees. The trees were probably cut due to damage from recent storms. We were able to get a good look at the tree rings. One of the trees was a big American beech that we estimated was nearly 200 years old. The other tree was an old oak that was probably nearly 150 years old. We met some nice large white pines, several red cedars, a couple of pitch pines, and several oaks and maples. I discussed the leaf litter at one spot by digging through the litter into the humus and soil. I discussed the decomposition of the leaves and some of the critters in the soil and litter. A very large earth worm was found and I discussed how these worms are from Europe and not native to North America. I also turned over some rotting logs hoping to scare up a salamander or two but no such luck. I did point out some strands of fungal hyphae that were present though. We also visited a couple of little streams and I tried to find some stream invertebrates to show the group by scooping up some clumps of leaves out of the water. I was only able to scare up a few amphipods to show. Fortunately I had a bug box to put one in so people could get a good look. All in all a very enjoyable walk for everyone. I can’t wait for the next one!