Workshop looks at Delta County’s natural history

ESCANABA — The Delta County Non-Motorized Trail (DCNT) organization is presenting a workshop on the natural history of Delta County.

The aim of the workshop is to better acquaint citizens with the natural world through the exploration of natural community types that are close to our homes. The workshop will provide participants the opportunity to observe first-hand, and discuss some of the plants, animals, insects, and invertebrates that occur around us.

Local field biologists Glenn Vande Water and Joe Kaplan will serve as guides for exploring several natural community types at the West Side Recreation Area (WSRA). The WSRA provides a very nice example of the natural diversity occurring within Delta County. Both men have made professional careers out of studying and writing about natural resources, and are pleased to offer this workshop.

The existing trail system at the WSRA provides easy access to numerous natural community types. The guides will focus participants’ attention to many natural features.

The workshop will take place on June 8 from 9 a.m. to approximately 12 p.m. Arrive at least 15 minutes early. The group will meet at the WSRA parking lot. From Danforth Road, go west on 19th Avenue North until you come to the Great Lakes and Recreation Club (south side of road across from gun range). Take Ski Hill Road south, crossing the railroad tracks and veering to the left approximately 100 feet to the parking lot.

Participants should come prepared; long sleeve shirts, long pants, boots or tennis shoes that you don’t mind getting wet, hat, bug dope, water, and field snack or lunch. Binoculars are highly suggested, and if available, a hand lens. Cameras are always a plus for documentation. The terrain is generally flat with occasional soft soils. RSVP via text or call by May 31 to (906) 399-6267. Limit 20 participants (might be flexible on this a bit).

This workshop is free, however, donations to the DCNT organization are appreciated. One of the goals of the DCNT is to provide the public with opportunities to further explore and enjoy nature through the maintenance and development of suitable trail systems in Delta County.

If successful, additional natural history workshops will be offered to explore other natural community types (i.e. bogs, northern wet meadows and shrub thickets, hardwood swamps, parabolic dunes) at sites with existing trail systems (i.e. Days River, Rapid River Ski Trails) or close to Escanaba.

If inclement (i.e. pouring rain) weather occurs, the workshop will take place on Sunday June 9.