Environmental Education 
Association of Indiana
 

Field Sessions

Birds, Boats, and Hemlock Bluffs

Launch canoes at Little Africa, a City of Bloomington access site on Lake Lemon and paddle up Bean Blossom Creek. We’ll look for herons and ducks on the lake and see the amazing clay nests of cliff swallows under a bridge. Passing beneath the sheer bluff of Trevlac Bluffs, a Sycamore Land Trust Nature Preserve, we’ll see hemlock trees, relics of glacial ages. As the stream narrows, we can pull out to look at rocks and aquatic life.

 

 

 


Trevlac Bluffs Nature Preserve is named for its towering 200-foot bluff over Beanblossom Creek that features a rare stand of native eastern hemlock trees, found naturally in only about two dozen places in Indiana. Hemlocks are now a more northerly species, and the stands in Indiana are remnants from the cooler early post-glacial climate of thousands of years ago. The property is dedicated as an Indiana State Nature Preserve by the Department of Natural Resources, in recognition of the statewide significance of the natural communities preserved here.


The preserve also protects over 100 acres of forested wetlands in the floodplain of Beanblossom Creek and over a mile of the creek itself, which is the main input for Lake Lemon about a mile and a half downstream. National research identifies the preserve as one of three critical forest blocks in the Midwest for breeding migratory songbirds.


Schedule:

1:30 Leave Waycross Camp
2:00 Unload canoes and start paddling
4:00  Return to launch site and load up
5:00  Back at Waycross

Focus on Sustainability

Visit a permaculture farm and a spiritual nature retreat center to learn how local people and working to renew the soil and the soul. Juan Carlos Arango and Robert Frew are developing Sobramesa Farm to produce healthy food and teach others about composting, hugel culture and other methods of sustainable crop production.

 

 

 

 

At The Friends’ Mount Gilead retreat, participants will learn about Mt. Gilead Friends Retreat’s unstructured style of connecting adults and children alike to the wonders of the natural world. The tour and talk will include conversation on the Fireflies youth program, the Hermitage rental facility, and running the space on all volunteer power.

 

 

 

Schedule:

1:30  Leave Waycross Camp
2:00  Arrive at Sobramesa Farm
3:15  Leave for Mt. Gilead Retreat
4:30 Leave for Waycross


Trevlac Bluffs and Placer Gold

Take a hike at Trevlac Bluffs, a Sycamore Land Trust Nature Preserve and look out over the surrounding valleys and ridges. Shane Gibson, an environmental educator with Sycamore, will explain how glaciers shaped the land beyond their southern boundaries.


The boundary of the Wisconsin Glacier formed the area of this year’s EEAI conference in northwest Brown Co. Trevlac Bluffs Nature Preserve is named for its towering 200-foot bluff over Beanblossom Creek that features a rare stand of native eastern hemlock trees, found naturally in only about two dozen places in Indiana. Hemlocks are now a more northerly species, and the stands in Indiana are remnants from the cooler early post-glacial climate of thousands of years ago. The property is dedicated as an Indiana State Nature Preserve by the Department of Natural Resources, in recognition of the statewide significance of the natural communities preserved here.

 

Hemlocks on Trevlac Bluffs by Jeff Danielson

 


The preserve also protects over 100 acres of forested wetlands in the floodplain of Beanblossom Creek and 1.7 miles of the creek itself, which is the main input for Lake Lemon about a mile and a half downstream. National research identifies the preserve as one of three critical forest blocks in the Midwest for breeding migratory songbirds. The tributaries of Beanblossom Creek flowing from the north contain placer gold. After our hike, we will try our luck at panning for gold.

 

Schedule:

1:30 Leave Waycross Camp
2:00 Arrive at Trevlac Bluffs and hike
5:00  Back at Waycross


Forests and the Future

Join us for this educational and informative field trip to Morgan-Monroe State Forest!  Indiana's largest State Forest is the site of two research projects.  We will visit both the Hardwood Ecosystem Experiment and the Ameriflux Tower.

 

The Hardwood Ecosystem Experiment (HEE) is a 100-year study of forest management and its impacts on plants and animals.  Initiated in 2006, one of the goals of this project is to understand the response of targeted native wildlife and plant species to forest management, in order to identify the positive effects and mitigate thee potential negative effects on species of conservation concern.  We will visit one of the practice sites with HEE staff and participate in data collection activities.

 

The Ameriflux Tower, a 46 meter tower that measures the fluxes of carbon, water and energy, has been operational since 1998 and regularly contributes data on the carbon dynamics of the surrounding deciduous forest ecosystem and other variables relevant for the biosphere - atmosphere exchange of carbon dioxide to national (Ameriflux) and international (Fluxnet) research networks.  The core of the project is an  assessment of the carbon sequestration of this forest ecosystem using the micrometeorological tower and ground based approaches, two independent and highly complementary methodologies.  The primary long term research questions are:

1. How much carbon dioxide does the forest take up at MMSF?

2. What factors (e.g., nutrients, species composition, climate) regulate forest productivity?

3. How will the ability of the forest to take up carbon respond to climate change?

 

 

Schedule:

1:30 Leave Waycross Camp

2:00-3:15 Hardwood Ecosystem Experiment

3:30-4:45 Ameriflux Tower

5:00 Return to Waycross 

 

 

© Environmental Education Association of Indiana
Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software