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Wildlife Wednesday: Southern Flying Squirrel

  • January 20, 2021

Thursday January 21st is Squirrel Appreciation Day. So today’s Wildlife Wednesday species is the southern flying squirrel. Despite the name, the southern flying squirrel doesn’t actually fly, but glides from tree to tree using a thin membrane of skin stretching from the wrists to the ankles. This membrane is known is the patagium or more simply called the gliding membrane. The southern flying squirrel has thick and soft greyish brown fur and a cream colored underbelly. They have large eyes…

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A Holiday Gift

  • December 14, 2020

Paul Cypher, Interpreter, C.I.G. Gift giving is basically the same, isn’t it?  It doesn’t matter if it is a holiday gift, a birthday gift, graduation gift or whatever. The mystery item is wrapped and given to an individual who often knows it’s coming but does not know what it is. Upon opening, they hopefully get excited and talk about it for years to come. But sometimes, gifts are not always planned. A few weeks ago, the crew setting up the…

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Top 10 Reasons to Keep Metroparks on Your Mind in the Winter

  • December 2, 2020

Winter is the perfect time for the cold-weather fans to get out to your Metroparks for an adventure.  But did you know, it also a great time for those who would rather avoid the cold, to get outside and make some new memories?  Here are 10 reasons why your Metroparks are a great place to visit this winter. Hike-Bike Trails: If you want to get outside for a breath of fresh air, your Metroparks Hike-Bike Trails are the place to…

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Winter at Wolcott Metropark Farm Center

  • December 1, 2020

Written By: Kathleen Clinton, Metroparks C.I.G. Animal Care Specialist As winter approaches at Wolcott Metropark Farm Center we must prepare for the comfort and safety of our farm animals. Although you might think that keeping them inside and warm is the best for them, you are mistaken. Farm animals need shelter but not an airtight structure. A slightly drafty barn will allow proper ventilation to keep our livestock healthy. The animals body heat in an airtight barn can cause the barn…

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Fall Bird Migration Fills the Skies at Your Metroparks

  • October 5, 2020

At the Huron-Clinton Metroparks, September is known as Bird Migration Month and at Lake Erie Metropark it is known as Raptor Month. As the summer winds down and fall takes over animals start preparing for the winter and birds start their migration. Less than half the bird species in the United States are year-round residents of their home range. For animals to survive the winter migration is key. It is a common assumption that migration is solely due to the…

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Harvesting: Getting the Most from your Garden

  • September 1, 2020

What if much of what we need for our well-being could be found in a small patch of soil? Many people plant personal gardens in the summer and the most rewarding thing about planting one is harvesting in the fall! The harvesting time for each plant depends on several factors including length of maturity, temperature, precipitation, health of the soil, health of the plant, and insect and weed control. After you spend the summer raising your favorite veggies, berries, and…

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Water, the Root of the Solution: Exploring water’s role in the health of the environment

  • July 31, 2020

Written by: Jessica Getschman, C.I.G. – Indian Springs Metropark Interpreter Michigan is known for its fresh water, and that includes more than just the Great Lakes.  Swamps, fens, marshes, rivers, and so many more types of wetlands are found scattered throughout our state. This makes water quality a great place to start the conversation about a healthy environment in Michigan.  An important thing to remember when thinking about a healthy environment, is that we’re really talking about supporting healthy ecosystems.…

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Wasps: Heroines for the Lazy Home Gardener

  • July 29, 2020

Written by: Victoria Taylor Sluder, Western District Interpretive Services Supervisor D.I.Y. In my grandmother’s time self-sufficiency was more of a requirement than an option.  My generation hasn’t needed to know how to make bread when every grocery store always has racks of bagged loaves waiting for purchase whenever one wants a slice.  Why bother with yeast and flour? Sure, hobby baking is fun and maybe bread machines were a fad for a short while a few years ago.  But really, as…

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A Different Kind of Essential Worker

  • June 15, 2020

We hear a lot about pollinators these days. So, who are these pollinators? With a few clicks of my mouse and some fast typing, I can pull up pictures of bees, wasps, butterflies, hummingbirds, moths (even hummingbird moths!), bats, beetles, wasps, and flies. I’ve been doing a lot of computer-based learning lately, and perhaps you have too. But the great thing about living pollinators is that you aren’t limited to going online to see them, these animals can be found…

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“Field of Bees”

  • May 18, 2020

When I mention "field of bees," what image comes to mind? Do you see a spring field bursting with clover and daisies, the hum of fuzzy, industrious honey bees filling the air? It's a beautiful image, but it's decidedly… new. All of these wonderful flowers and honeybees, though mostly naturalized now, came to North America in the last several hundred years, brought by farmers from overseas. If you want to experience a native Michigan field of bees, head down to…

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