Thursday, September 10, 2009

Herrick Fen- natural history romp

Herrick Fen Nature Preserve was one of the pre-trips for Friday's Conservation Symposium at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History. As a huge fan of the fens, it was a pleasure to trek up to Portage County to see the fall colors coming to life. Rick Gardner and Tom Arbour from Ohio Division of Natural Areas and Preserves were the guides on our journey, but many in the group were the nature-nut types, including the gal in the next photo.

Preserve Manager Karen Adair gave us the background of the removal of a dam which created the lake that had engulfed this fen. Once the dam was removed, the wetland plants are springing forth from the seed bank and taking hold once again. The Purple-stemmed Aster, Symphyotrichum puniceum, a tall "swamp" aster and bold yellow Beggar's Ticks, Bidens cernua bloomed in profusion.

"New" mud flats are the by product of the release of the lake, and we watched as a Solitary Sandpiper and many Killdeer enjoyed feeding in the murk. Ohio Birders are watching this fen to see what might be attracted to it this fall. I kept watching for a Long-billed Curlew.... maybe next trip.


  1. Thank you for bringing this to my attention. Can we do a dragonfly survey?

  2. Hi Ray-
    We had a Mosaic Darner while we were there- but it appeared to be a tenneral- and we didn't want to net it, for fear of harming it. So it might be a great place to check out!

  3. Thanks for a wonderful blog! I visited Herrick Fen on October 25, 2009 (first visit since last year) and was surprised to see it emptied of water. You photos and comments were the best available on the web, but where can I learn more about what was done, when, and why, and any future plans to restore this fantastic site?