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Nature Journaling 2013

The Friends of Six Mile Creek and the Natural Areas Commission of the City of Ithaca announce an exciting new educational series in 2013 for children aged 7-12. Nature Journaling for Kids will introduce children to the natural history of the Six Mile Creek Natural Area.  Facilitated by Laurie Rubin, participants will observe and learn about animals and plants while they record their impressions in words and pictures.

Rubin has introduced second and third graders to nature journaling as a teacher at BJM and Cayuga Heights schools. Her experience complements the expertise of the four naturalists and teachers who will each lead one themed workshop: Animal Tracking, Stream Safari, Wonderful Wild Flowers, and Native Trees.  Kids (accompanied by a parent) can participate in one or more of these fun, educational and free activities in 2013.

We’ll meet at the parking area of the Mulholland Wildflower Preserve just off Giles Street. Journals will be provided or bring your own. Contact Laurie (592-0835) or Anna (379-0924) for more information.

The 2013 schedule is as follows:

April 131 – 2:30 pm   Stream Safari with Phil Koons
Did you ever wonder what kinds of critters live in our local streams? Join us on a Stream Safari to learn about the insects, fish and other organisms that live beneath the water’s surface. We’ll collect live samples and explore an exciting new world!

May 41 – 2:30 pm   Wonderful Wild Flowers with Betsy Darlington
Spring wildflowers seem to magically rise from the forest floor and then, almost as quickly, disappear, not to be
seen again until the next spring. Join us to learn the names (and secrets) of these fleeting flowers of the
Mulholland Wildflower Preserve.

June 11 – 2:30 pm   Native Trees with Ethan Dropkin
Trees are an important part of the environment around us; they provide us with clean air, shade, food, and lumber. We’ll learn about some of the trees in our local forests, how to identify them and what they can tell us about the greater environment.

Six Mile Creek Celebration 2012

Celebrate Six Mile Creek!

Sunday, September 30, 2012, 2-4 pm

Mulholland Wildflower Preserve, just off Giles St.

You’re invited to join the Friends of Six Mile Creek and the Natural Areas Commission as we welcome and get reacquainted with friends and neighbors, new and old!

            Why do you visit Six Mile Creek?

Participate in an informal survey that will help us develop new and exciting learning and volunteer activities.

            Explore Your Watershed

Begun in 2009, this series has included such topics as Birdwatching, Geomorphology, Spring Flora, and Big Trees, and “tours” of the city water supply.  Meet previous walk leaders and take a guided nature walk.  Suggest topics for the upcoming 2013 series.

            NEW in 2013! Nature Journaling at Six Mile Creek

A preview of an exciting new series for kids, ages 7 and up, and their parents. Spend a Saturday afternoon learningabout the natural history of Six Mile Creek and keep a journal of your observations. A different theme each month: Animal Tracking, Stream Insects, Wildflowers, Trees.

            Volunteer Opportunities

Trail maintenance, invasive species control, invasive species mapping, tree inventory, plant collecting. Become a Friend and steward of your natural area!

Contact Anna: ams15 AT cornell.edu

Explore Your Watershed Series 2012

2012 Explore Your Watershed Series of Walks and Talks in the Six Mile Creek Natural Area

Six Mile Creek Geology and Stream Geomorphology. Saturday, April 28 (10 am). Learn all about the forces that have shaped the course of Six Mile Creek in both ancient and modern times. Led by geologist Dan Karig. Meet in the parking lot of the Mulholland Wildflower Preserve.

Spring Flora. Saturday, May 5 (10 am). Led by botanist Robert Wesley. Meet in the parking lot of the Mulholland Wildflower Preserve.

Birdwatching at Six Mile Creek. Saturday, June 2 (8 am). Led by Meena Haribal. Meet in the parking lot of the Mulholland Wildflower Preserve. Bring binoculars!

BIG TREES! Saturday, May 19 (9:30 am). Some of the largest local specimens of red and white oak, tulip poplar, and hemlock can be found in the city’s Natural Area surrounding Six Mile Creek. Come see these large and interesting trees in the forest on the south side of the creek. Be prepared for some steep trails, just over two miles, lasting about two hours. Meet at the Mulholland Wildflower Preserve on Giles St. Saturday, July 9 at 9:30 am. Led by Joe McMahon.

Ithaca’s Water Supply: Past, Present, and Future. Sunday, June 24 (10am-1pm). A walk along the woodland trails that parallel Six Mile Creek, the source of Ithaca’s drinking water, led by Watershed Coordinator Roxy Johnston. Meet at the Mulholland Wildflower Preserve parking lot to carpool to the starting point at Commonland. This walk is fifth in the 2012 “Explore Your Watershed” series of natural history walks sponsored by the Friends of Six Mile Creek and the Natural Areas Commission. For more info, contact Roxy:roxannaj@cityofithaca.org

General information on the Explore Your Watershed series can be directed to Anna (ams15 AT cornell.edu).

Explore Your Watershed 2011

Explore Your Watershed: The Natural History of the Six Mile Creek Natural Area
A series of walks and talks Spring & Summer 2011

Invasive Plants. Saturday, April 16. 10 am – noon. An introduction to the natural history of invasive plants. Learn about mugwort, honeysuckle, garlic mustard, knotweed, Norway maple and swallow-wort, all found in the Six Mile Creek Natural Area. Led by plant ecologist Tom Whitlow.  Meet in the parking lot of the Mulholland Wildflower Preserve.

Six Mile Creek Geology and Stream Geomorphology. April 30. 10 am – noon. Learn all about the forces that have shaped the course of Six Mile Creek in both ancient and modern times.  Led by geologist Dan Karig.  Meet in the parking lot of the Mulholland Wildflower Preserve.

Birdwatching at Six Mile Creek. Saturday, May 21. 7 – 9 am. Led by Meena Haribal. Meet in the parking lot of the Mulholland Wildflower Preserve. Bring binoculars!

Ithaca’s Water Supply: Past, Present and Future. June 4. 10 am – 1 pm. An informative walk along the woodland trails that parallel Six Mile Creek, the source of Ithaca’s drinking water, led by Watershed Coordinator Roxy Johnson. Participation limited to 20. Call or e-mail Roxy to register: 607-273-4680; roxannaj@cityofithaca.org. Meet at the Mulholland Wildflower Preserve parking lot to carpool to the starting point at Commonland.

BIG TREES! July 9. 9:30 am. Some of the largest local specimens of red and white oak, tulip poplar, and hemlock can be found in the city’s Natural Area surrounding Six Mile Creek.  Come see these large and interesting trees in the forest on the south side of the creek. Be prepared for some steep trails, just over two miles, lasting about two hours.  Meet at the Mulholland Wildflower Preserve on Giles St. Saturday, July 9 at 9:30 am.  Led by Joe McMahon.

 

Wildflower Preserve Maintenance

New Roots School Helps Out in the Wildflower Preserve

New Roots Charter School students after their 4th weekly visit to the Wildflower Preserve. The group has been working to maintain trails and pull invasive species this spring. The Friends of Six Mile Creek and City of Ithaca Natural Areas Commission thank these eager volunteers for their hard work and good spirit!

Explore Your Watershed 2010

Explore Your Watershed: The Natural History of the Six Mile Creek Natural Area
A series of walks and talks Spring & Summer 2010

Unless otherwise noted walks begin in Wildflower Preserve Parking Lot

 

Topic Walk Leader Date
Spring Flora Robert Wesley May 8 (10am-12pm)
Birds Meena Haribal May 29 (7-8:30am)
Geology & Stream Geomorph. Dan Karig June 19 (10am-12pm)
Ithaca’s Water Supply: Past, Present, and Future Roxy Johnson July 10 (10am-1pm)
Big Trees! Joe McMahon Sept 25 (9:30-11:30am)
Water Works Walk Roxy Johnson October 16 (10am-1pm)*

*Group size limited to 20. Please RSVP to Roxy: roxannaj@cityofithaca.org.

For more information on the walks and talks contact Anna Stalter.

Wildflower Appreciation Day 2007 Announcement

Friends of Six Mile Creek is happy to announce that the second annual Wildflower Appreciation Day will be held Saturday, May 5, 2007 (10am-3pm). Tours of the Six Mile Creek Natural Area by local experts will be given every half hour on the half hour. There will also be many more activities for kids and adults including wildflower (and invasive species) identification activities.

Below we have an excerpt from last year’s wildflower check-off list. Identification “stations” throughout the Natural Area help plant identification novices to find these biologically and culturally important plants.

This year’s check-off list can be downloaded by clicking here (be careful, it’s a large file 2.7 mb). The plant descriptions can also be downloaded.

Wildflower Appreciation Day 2006

More than 50 people participated in walks and scavenger hunts at Wildflower Appreciation Day, including Ithaca’s Director of Planning and Development Thys VanCort and Common Council member Mary Tomlan. Friends of Six Mile Creek and the City of Ithaca Natural Areas Commission sponsored the events highlighting the human and natural history of the area and pointing out the threats posed to wildflowers from invasive species.

A young participant in the Plant Scavenger Hunt double checks his list. These native violets are nearly surrounded by invasive garlic mustard.

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Wildflower Appreciation Day 2006

Ithacans love their native species. Six Mile Creek Natural Area proudly dislayed its native wildflowers to participants in Saturday’s Wildflower Appreciation Day organized by Friends of Six Mile Creek and the City of Ithaca Natural Areas Commission. The gorgeous, sunny day featured guided walks by local experts, homemade garlic mustard pesto, a plant scavenger hunt and, to the delight of local kids, a garlic mustard pulling contest. Sophie and Diego Payne Inigo, after hours in the Natural Area scouting invasives, came out holding one of the prize winning garlic mustard plants like a trophy fish. Their prize winning root measured 11 inches. A huge thank you to Anna Stalter, member of the Natural Areas Commission and tireless volunteer and Jess Langan-Peck, our intern for their creativity in designing activities and hard work organizing the event.

Jess, our tireless intern.
Anna Stalter’s garlic mustard pesto.
Anna helps a young participant measure his garlic mustard.
Jess helps prepare arts and crafts.
A red trillium, one of the stars of the event.
Another native trillium.
Anna explains the finer points of measuring invasive garlic mustard.
Robert Wesley prepares to give one of his celebrated tours of the area.
Charlotte and Jess get the tables ready.
Nat, one of our great volunteers (her mother Louise also volunteered!),
with Robert and a fist full of garlic mustard.
Another of the celebrated native wildflowers in Six Mile.

Garlic Mustard Pull 2006

More Than 25 Volunteers Help Maintain Trails and Pull Garlic Mustard

Despite cold weather and a constant drizzle more than 25 hardy volunteers from Phi Kappa Tau and Delta Chi fraternities attended the most recent Friends of Six Mile Creek work day. Delta Chi volunteers joined the us thanks to the generous help of On Site Volunteer Services. Volunteers helped with trail improvement and pulled more than a dozen garbage bags of garlic mustard from a particularly ecologically sensitive area of Six Mile.