Event Archive

Descriptions of past events

2016

Earth Day for the Birds!

  • Ben VanderWeide, Natural Areas Stewardship Manager, Oakland Township Parks and Recreation
  • Friday, April 22, 7:30 pm at Cranberry Lake Park, 388 W. Predmore Road, Oakland Township, MI

Join us to eat s’mores and watch woodcock do their cool aerial mating dance! Woodcock begin dancing just after sunset, which is at 8:22 pm on Earth Day 2016. While we wait for sunset we will enjoy snacks, a spring evening, and a brief intro to woodcock biology. As the light fades we will quiet down so that we can enjoy this avian spectacle. Bring a comfortable lawn chair, binoculars, and layers to add as the night cools down.

Coyote – Our Urban Adapter

  • Thursday, January 21, 6:30 pm
  • Paint Creek Cider Mill
  • Laurel Zoet, Naturalist, Nature on the GO! As a Naturalist Educator, Laurel has over 10 year of experience, working as a Explorer Guide with the Michigan DNR, interpretive naturalist with Huron-Clinton Metroparks, Naturalist with West Bloomfield Parks and Recreation, and School Program Coordinator with the Leslie Science and Nature Center. Laurel is passionate about connecting people of all ages with the diversity and wonder of the natural phenomenon right in their own backyards.

Native Americans told legends about the coyote and yet today this wild canine only seems to see bad press. How can one animal be feared by some and revered by others? Utilizing data collected in recent big city studies, this one hour educational presentation will look at the biology, the myths, and the facts about one of North America’s most highly adaptable animals.

Learning About the Lakeplains Oak Openings Region

  • Thursday, February 11, 6:30 pm
  • Paint Creek Cider Mill
  • Mike Losey, Natural Resources Manager, Springfield Township, MI. Mike grew up in Oakland County, and even spent some time with Oakland Township as a seasonal stewardship technician. Most recently Mike spent 6 years working in the Oak Openings region in northwest Ohio with The Nature Conservancy. He recently returned to the area as the Natural Resources Manager for nearby Springfield Township.

The Lakeplain Oak Openings is a unique region spanning seven counties in southeast Michigan and northwest Ohio. With over 150 state or federally listed species, it is well recognized as a biodiversity hotspot within the Lake Erie watershed. However, despite its noted importance the natural habitat is highly fragmented and stressed by incompatible land use.  These modifications have negatively impacted the native flora and fauna as well as compromised the ecosystem services the region provides.  Attendees will learn about the special features of this region, how it compares and contrasts with the landscape of northern Oakland County, and what efforts are underway to restore this important part of our natural heritage.

Controlled Fire in Oakland Township Parks

Ben VanderWeide, Natural Areas Stewardship Manager, Oakland Township Parks and Recreation

  • Public Meeting6:30 pm, Thursday, February 25, Paint Creek Cider Mill. Regular prescribed fire benefits many of our forests, meadows, and wetlands. Learn more about reasons for using controlled fire in our natural areas, preparations for controlled fire, and how a controlled fire crew conducts a burn. We will also review the Oakland Township parks scheduled for controlled fire in 2016.
  •  Volunteer Crew Training – 9 am to 2 pm on Saturday, February 27, Paint Creek Cider Mill. If you are interested in joining our volunteer prescribed fire crew, join us for this training workshop. We will cover reasons for using prescribed fire, preparations for conducting a fire, necessary tools, roles of each burn crew member, and ignition patterns. Weather permitting we will do a small demonstration burn after lunch. Snacks will be provided, but please bring your own lunch. RSVP required to bvanderweide@oaklandtownship.org or 248-651-7810 ext. 401 by Thursday, February 25.

Prescribed Ecological Burn Public Meeting

When: Annually in February. 2016: Thursday, February 25. 6:30 pm

Where: Paint Creek Cider Mill, 4480 Orion Rd, Rochester, MI 48306

Description: Regular prescribed fire benefits many of our forests, meadows, and wetlands. Learn more about reasons for using controlled fire in our natural areas, preparations for controlled fire, and how a controlled fire crew conducts a burn. We will also review the Oakland Township parks scheduled for controlled fire in 2016.

Prescribed Fire Volunteer Crew Training

When: Annually in February: 2016: Saturday, February 20. 9 am – 2 pm

Where: Paint Creek Cider Mill, 4480 Orion Road, Rochester, MI 48306

Description: If you are interested in joining our volunteer prescribed fire crew, or would like to learn more about using prescribed fire as a land management tool, join us for this training workshop. We will cover reasons for using prescribed fire, preparations for conducting a fire, necessary tools, roles of each burn crew member, and ignition patterns. Snacks will be provided, but participants should bring their own lunch. Weather permitting we will do a small demonstration burn after lunch.

Prescribed Fire Volunteer Crew Training

When: Saturday, December 12, 2015. 9 am – 2 pm

Where: Paint Creek Cider Mill, 4480 Orion Road, Rochester, MI 48306

Description: If you are interested in joining our volunteer prescribed fire crew, or would like to learn more about using prescribed fire as a land management tool, join us for this training workshop. We will cover reasons for using prescribed fire, preparations for conducting a fire, necessary tools, roles of each burn crew member, and ignition patterns. Weather permitting we will do a small demonstration burn after lunch.

RSVP required to bvanderweide@oaklandtownship.org or 248-651-7810 ext. 401 by Wednesday, December 9.

Our prescribed fire contractor burns at Gallagher Creek Park, spring 2015.

Our prescribed fire contractor burns at Gallagher Creek Park, spring 2015.

Invasive Shrub Control

We will work to remove invasive shrubs like buckthorn and autumn olive in some of our special natural areas. Expect work to be physically demanding. All workdays are 9 am to 12 pm.

  • Paint Creek Heritage Area – Wet Prairie. Prairies are one of the least common and most endangered natural communities in Michigan. Come to one of these workdays to see a spectacular example of prairie right in Oakland Township. Meet at the Silver Bell Road parking lot along the Paint Creek Trail. Workdays for summer and fall 2016 are listed below.
    • Saturday, June 25
    • Thursday, June 30
    • Thursday, July 7
    • Saturday, July 16
    • Thursday, July 21
    • Thursday, July 28
    • Thursday, August 4
    • September 27
    • November 1
    • November 12
    • November 15

Garlic Mustard Pulls

Now a rite of spring, get out to enjoy the warm spring breezes while pulling garlic mustard. This invasive biennial degrades even healthy woodlands.

  • Bear Creek Nature Park – 740 W. Snell Rd., 9 am to 12 pm. May 3 and 10
  • Blue Heron Environmental Area – 3320 N. Rochester Rd., 9 am – 12 pm. May 17 and 24.