- October 30, 2009 at 2:46 pm
My freshman year at Carleton, I set out on a formidable task: to familiarize myself with the 880 acres of campus known as the Cowling Arboretum. Armed with a pair of sturdy shoes and an Arboretum map purchased from the college bookstore, I spent numerous afternoons after class walking and following the map—getting my bearings, enjoying a retreat from hectic campus life, taking in the visual splendor of the Arb’s prairie, trees, and wildlife.
- October 22, 2009 at 3:47 pm
White-tailed Deer can be seen year-round in the Arb. They are a familiar resident of woods and meadows all across the eastern United States. When one encounters deer in the Arb they seem to gambol off playfully. But come fall, the violence of the rut shatters the illusion of playfulness. Furthermore, the familiar deer is only familiar because of drastic overpopulation that makes it a major management concern for Arb staff.
- October 16, 2009 at 5:17 pm
Signs of autumn’s progression towards winter are all around. Apples hang heavy and ripe from the trees, birds flock together and prepare to fly south, students break out coats and scarves, and Northfield even experiences an early dusting of snow, hinting at what’s in store for winter term. It is this kind of weather that makes many Carleton students yearn to hide away in their dorm rooms, away from the frosty air. And though unfortunately hibernation is not an option for students, it is the natural thing to do this time of year for an often overlooked animal in the Arboretum: the snake.
- October 9, 2009 at 1:33 pm
Mussels in the Cannon River? Yes, that’s right; Mussels don’t only live in the ocean. There is a biologically unique set of freshwater mussels that live in fresh lakes and streams most everywhere. In fact our very own Cannon River is host to 15-18 of the nearly 300 species of mussels in North America.
- October 1, 2009 at 5:32 pm
As the air temperature begins to drop and clouds blanket the sky with increasing frequency, some of us see the browning of leaves and steady disappearance of birds and other wildlife as a sign of the coming darkness of winter. Fall bird migration may not be the same inspiring sign of welcome change as spring migration, but it can be just as impressive. So if you find yourself out in the Arb walking, jogging, or just finding a place to enjoy the outdoors, try to notice some of the birds around you and think about what they might be doing here.
- September 23, 2009 at 5:27 pm
Upon returning to campus this fall, I know I was not alone in stopping short at the sight of the greatly dehydrated Lyman Lakes. Our groundskeepers’ helpful notices about the temporary nature of this measure, for a shoreline restoration project, pacified me, and now I only wish that I had been here to see all the bicycles and beer cans initially exposed by the fallen water level.
- May 29, 2009 at 10:08 am
In this last week of Arb Notes, I'd like to address a topic relevant to the Arb and the now ever-present conversation about carbon emissions and credits. Do restored prairies sequester significant amounts of carbon?
- May 22, 2009 at 12:57 pm
When I begin to describe my involvement in the Sixth Annual Arboretum Bird Count Saturday morning, uninitiated friends almost invariably focus on one detail:
“Six in the morning?!!”
- May 15, 2009 at 3:28 pm
The Arb is alive with the sound of warblers! Take a walk through the Arb this week and enjoy one of the most exciting times of the year for Minnesota birding enthusiasts. Warblers are songbirds of the genus Dendroica, which means “of the tree.” Indeed, high in the tree-tops . . .
- May 8, 2009 at 8:49 pm
Unfortunately there is no Arb Studies 395 for the true Arb enthusiasts among us, but spring term means an approximation of that for some classes. If you’ve been wondering what those students are doing out in the prairie or back in the woods, the answer is: lots of things.
- May 1, 2009 at 1:42 pm
You might have noticed smoke coming from the lower arb, or the huge black expanse of hillside where just a week ago there was grass. A few days ago, a friend came back from a run and asked me, “why did you guys kill the prairie?”
It’s prescribed burn season, and it might seem like the management plan is death and destruction. But burning is actually . . .
- April 24, 2009 at 3:09 pm
Spring is here! On campus the soft “woosh” of Frisbees through the air attests to its arrival. A little bit further a field in the Carleton arboretum a much louder sound announces the arrival of spring. This sound is the chorus of frogs, which can be heard near any still body of water, particularly Kettlehole Marsh.