05-17-13 Field Note

Lorinda Hunt provides details of field restoration maintence, wildflower growth and a new plant species at MPG North

Fog rises from Home Pond on a cold spring morning as a heavy frost blankets the ground.
This week the ranch field crew came to MPG North to perform spring maintenance on the property. We replaced over 400 old yellow exclosures with larger ones to allow for new spring growth. We also repaired and adjusted over 500 exclosures to better protect trees and shrubs. The crew removed invasive mullein from the Entrance Meadow. We constructed three new buck and rail fences to block traffic on decommissioned roads.
We also sought out and exclosed new aspen suckers to protect them from deer browse.
Spring showers encouraged many colorful new blossoms this week.
Oregon Grape(above), Blue Clematis(below)
Many faces of trillium blanket the ground.
Fairyslipper (Calypso bulbosa), requires specific mycorrhizal fungi for successful germination.
Roaring waters make the upper bridge on Rumble Creek feel more treacherous to cross than usual. This footbridge almost washed away in the high spring runoff.
The field crew discovered a new flower at MPG North this week. Arctic sweet coltsfoot (Petasites frigidus) blooms near the southwest marsh. Montana lies at the southern edge of this species’ range and occurrence is rare in the northwest corner of the state.
Well fed Chickadees
 
 
Posted on 5/17/2013 by Lorinda Bullington

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