Use of the Forest

Public use of Saginaw Forest is encouraged. Rules for the public's use include (but are not limited to):

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Major leaf fall

Autumn morning 2009-10-28
Wow! I come back from a conference and it seems like most of the trees have dropped their leaves! The work necessary to clear branches and leaves and other autumnal debris begins...

Birds at the feeder

FeederPut up some bird feeders next to the cabin, and already there have been several birds paying it a visit.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Updating past log entries: 1989

Updated the past caretaker log entries from August and September of 1989. Interestingly, there was an entry about the developers next door (to the east) offering "to move the berm and dam .. and contain erosion," something that the current Stream Restoration class is looking at in their work here.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Trees turning

A walk in the woods

Yet another autumn in Saginaw Forest - although it is my first - brings a reddening of the leaves. This maple, half-toppled by a fallen tree - has a nice color gradient that shows the panoply of colors seen in other parts of the forest.

Chopping wood

Wood in the boat

A few weekends ago, a large tree fell across the path on the north side of the lake. Today I finished chopping up that tree (and the maple that got snapped when it fell) and brought some wood back to the south side of the lake for firewood using a boat.


Friday, October 9, 2009

Rain overnight = water in the creek

Overnight rain of about 0.25 inches means that there is now flow in the creek behind the barn. Hopefully, some members of the stream restoration class will be coming out here later today to measure discharge and velocity of water in that creek.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Captured mouse

Captured mouse
I captured this little mouse the other day. This guy was the third one that I caught manually, in addition to the two other ones that encountered mousetraps. The mice have started to come out more now than in the summer. Why? I don't know. Maybe they have started to come out of the woodwork, since their summer supply of food is gone, or perhaps they have found a way in from the outside... (I really hope it's not this latter possibility.)

What is amazing about the three mice that I captured was that they didn't really know to run away from me, and running around during the day, or while the lights were on.. This little bugger was scurrying around, but  I wasn't able to actually capture him until I realized that he was climbing up the curtains (I didn't know they could do that). He was previously trying to climb up the front of the fireplace stones, but fell off and scurried away once he saw me come.

The days are getting colder, but I hope that this change doesn't mean that there will be more mice coming in to make a nest. Of course, I filled in many of the cracks upstairs with "Great Stuff" - a foam insulation product that one can spray into small voids. There are some places in the roof where previous mice have taken out the insulation in order to build nests in the wall. I'll have to fill in these voids, too, methinks.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Cool and misty morning

Reflected shore
The morning of October 1, and there is a world of frozen dew and mist on the water. It's actually kinda cold outside, not surprising since it is still below freezing. Is the sound of Jackson Road and I-94 actually getting louder, or is that just what I'm expecting to happen as the leaves continue to fall? I don't actually know...

Last night, I was also wondering if Saginaw Forest is in a flight path for Ann Arbor city airport, because I don't recall hearing so many airplanes when I was living in town. Of course, I can hear a lot more things while living out here, since the background noise level is so much lower than anywhere else that I have lived.

Furnace on and fireplace working

Fireplace heating
The furnace was turned on yesterday and it was great to come back to a house that was warmer than outside. Last night, I also lit a fire in the fireplace, but made the mistake of burning cedar, which (although smells nice) smokes up the place quite a bit. However, I also did burn a couple of Pine Mountain logs that burn clean[er] and bright[er] than cedar. I'll have to figure out some fix for the lack-of-damper situation on the fireplace soon, but for right now, I'm happy.