Saturday, February 22, 2014

Bird walk and Ivy removal results

We had a nice sized group - nine in total - come out this morning for a pleasant bird walk in the park.   We meandered along the new nature trail and then up to the power line cut, both looking for birds and exploring the forest on a beautiful late winter morning.    And we did see a variety of birds including a noisy bunch of Crows, many Cardinals and Chickadees, a pair of Mallards in along the river flood plain, sparrows, several Red-Bellied Woodpeckers, a Tufted Titmouse, a Turkey Vulture, a Bald Eagle high overhead, and just maybe an American Kestrel wheeling high above the forest.

Immediately afterwards, six of us stayed on to tackle the invasive English Ivy that threatens the forest biodiversity.   The ivy chokes out the native plants; no native plants means no beneficial insects which means no food for forest birds to feed their young.    Our small team cleared the ivy off of trees covering maybe a quarter acres near the power lines.   By clearing it off the trees it both protects the trees from being smothered and prevents the ivy from go to seed berries.   A big thank you to the hard working crew.

Our next talk at our monthly meeting will be on Thursday, March 13.   Chuck Gibson of the Norfolk Master Gardeners and presenter in the CBF VoiCeS training will be talking to us about rain gardens, their beauties, benefits and how to build them.

On Saturday, March 29th, the Friends of Indian River volunteers will be working with the City to do a major tree planting along Indian River Road just east of the bridge. The City will have dug the holes and delivered the trees but we'll need lots of volunteers to help plant the trees and shrubs, spread mulch, and get the job done.   We hope that many of you can come out and help.  

On a different note, our group frequently hears about a variety of local seminars, lectures, and other training opportunities concerning nature, gardening and the environment.   If you are interested in hearing about such learning opportunities, you can join a new separate mailing list that we are starting.   Just drop us a note at info@friendsofindianriver.org if you are interested.

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