I've got a pretty scraggly looking map of our 40-acre patch started. We don't have a commercial survey done yet so the map edges are a W.A.G. based on the legal description and a rebar stake in the road that my neighbor assures me is a survey pin. Eventually we'll get a professional survey done and I'll start using that map for GIS and planning, but I'm not going to put too much more time into mapping things until that's done.
On the map I've got forest roads and near-roads marked in brown. The house is down in the SW corner, at the end of the county road. Soil-type areas are marked in yellow (data from USGS), the watercourse in blue (NE), and the wetland in orange (SE). The well marked is an old stone job that I need to cover up before the proverbial Little Timmy falls down it.
The house on the property is in good shape for a pile built in 1940, but like most buildings of the era it's not really very well adapted for the current economy, or for the climate, and it's certainly not well adapted for any of the likely futures ahead of us. Eventually we'll be building new one. Our first year has mostly been spent screwing around and figuring out what the seasons are like. We bought the place site-unseen from across the country and moved in last January during a blizzard after driving from Oklahoma. If given the option, don't move to the Upper Peninsula in January. Just don't do it.
Anyway, I'll get some pictures up here once I've got them reliably hosted.
Hi Geoffrey, welcome to Permies! Looks like you'll have plenty of firewood and deer hunting on your property. What's the reddish/brownish patch one the E lot line? I looks like you have some nice forest edges facing South for planting shrubs. Keeping the deer off of them may be a challenge. Welcome to snow country :)
Mike Jay wrote:What's the reddish/brownish patch one the E lot line?
Hi Mike :)
The red and orange are both freshwater forested wetland. There's some discrepancy in the mapping data I've been able to get from the feds, which accounts for using two different colors. We may need a permit to do anything significant in the orange area, but I'm almost certain we'll need one for the red area.
At the moment that whole corner is pretty good snowshoe hare habitat, and I'm happy to let them keep it, considering how much they're losing elsewhere.
Mike Jay wrote: Why are the hares losing so much habitat?
We're not planing much on our property that will negatively impact them, but they're losing habitat all across the northeast US. The largest piece of the problem seems to be that rising temperatures mean fewer days with snow on the ground during the part of the year that the Snowhoe hare has a white coat. No snow means they stand out to predators, so without something to hide under that will let them move around and forage safely, they're getting picked off by predators in the areas that used to be prime feeding and breeding ground.
The best way we can help them on our patch is to stay out of their space when possible, and to hinge cut some evergreens that will provide them with something to hide under as they move around the wetland. Basically we'll just be improvising covered walkways for them to hide under.
Gotcha... My uncle used to do that for deer habitat. Not sure if it worked but he thought it did. I'm guessing the species of conifer makes a difference. If I tried that with my black spruce, it wouldn't work. Most of them are hollow once they're over 6" diameter so they'd shatter if I tried to hinge them. I wonder how long those trees live once cut? I'd probably do a few and see how they work before risking cutting a bunch of them. But that's just me... Enjoy the adventure!
We'll see how it goes. Trying to mitigate climate change on that kind of hyper-local level is a bit like tilting at windmills, but I hate to do nothing and just watch them die out. It's not as if we just need to get them over the hump and wait for it to cool back down. They'll either make it or they won't. DNR thinks of the species as a resource with a dollar value attached, so slowing their decline this particular way makes more sense to them than it does to me. Still. We do what we can.
Ante nos rexit, nos servierunt.
They weren't very bright, but they were very, very big. Ad contrast: