Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Creating an environment

For the fourth day in a row, it was raining when I woke up.  The weather didn’t dissuade the first grade classes from Frazee, MN, from coming to do their annual tree planting on the refuge however.  They came to create an environment.

73 Tamarac NWR, 20132

For the past ten years, the Frazee first graders have come to help turn a former farmer’s field into a white pine forest.  Amazingly, the rain quit while these youngsters were here.  You could not find a more enthusiastic group of young arborists!  I think there were about ten volunteers here this morning to man the shovels and help the youngsters.  I made sure I had a father in each of my four groups because I just couldn’t get the shovel through the dense sod.  It gave me a true appreciation for those first white settlers in the area that built those Soddy houses to live in.  Hard work for sure.  Imagine the pride these youngsters will have when, in the future, they bring their children here to the refuge to show them the forest they planted.

73 Tamarac NWR, 20133

As the kids were leaving shortly after 2:00, I decided to spend the rest of the afternoon further familiarizing myself with the refuge.  I took a drive down the Blackbird Lake Auto Tour route through the showers that had returned.  I literally saw hundreds of American redstarts flitting among the trees and hunting insects from the ground.  A huge flock must have arrived over night.  There were also yellow warblers and flycatchers trying to find something to eat in the chilly temperatures.


Three of the flycatchers that can be seen on the refuge are the least, willow, and alder flycatchers.  They all look very similar so about the only way they can be identified is by their song.  This little one wasn’t singing today, so I can’t make a positive ID.


I watched spring arrive while I was down south earlier this year, but now I get to watch it arrive again here in the north.  Because of the severe winter, spring is really just getting here.  These blossoms weren’t here last week.  Do you think I could actually have a chance to find some morel mushrooms?  Now that would truly make my day!  Open-mouthed smile

Speaking of mushrooms, have you ever wondered how people grow them?  I have, so I really enjoyed reading about how it’s done on one of the blogs I follow.  If you’ve wondered the same thing, check out the latest post from Up North With Mel.  If I weren’t on the road, I think I would like to try this.


As I pulled in to park by the rig, this little dude was in my front yard.  I’m thinking it’s a gopher since once I brought Emma out it disappeared down a tunnel.  I’ve never seen a gopher close up before.  I guess it will join the ranks of the bear, woodchuck, and the porcupine that have been wandering around the RV rigs the last few days.


                                                                               THE END!!

Thanks for stopping by… talk to you later,  Judy