Next stewards meeting is the 15th of August. Regular work party 23rd of August
July Work Party, Interactive Wetland
The teaching wetland project, or should I say the Interactive Wetland is coming along nicely. At the July stewardship meeting, stewards brainstormed a better name for the project and changed it from Teaching Wetland to Interactive Wetland. This change more accurately reflects the wetlands purpose, a place where students can get hands on experience with field work in the environmental sciences without harming macroinvertebrate populations in our wetlands and streams that feed Chico and Little Anderson Creek. With funding provided by Silverdale Rotary Duck Bucks, stewards procured materials and poured the concrete catch basin, that will hold the water level in the pond at 18 inches. They also removed English Ivy that is beginning to spread into our natural rain garden on the downstream side of the new pond. Once the concrete has cured, the forms will be removed and a trash grate installed for safety. This area will also be used as a native plant ID site.
National Day of Caring
A small, but hard working group of volunteers, began the daunting task of removing garbage and noxious weeds from what was once a small wetland. This is the only area in the park that has the invasive Reed Canary Grass. A Volkswagen chassis was removed from the weeds as well as a lot of other garbage. Scotch broom was pulled, releasing a large patch of Nootka Rose plants. Thanks to Lori Raymaker KC Parks, Harrison Hospital for lunch, MTV Home Repair for use of the dump trailer, stewards and Tiffany for your help.
Rose Foundation Grant
FONHHP has received a grant from the Rose Foundation for our Wetland Mapping Project. Check out the project on the Park Projects Page
ICOS stands for Individual, Clumps, Openings and Skips. These are techniques applied to Variable Density Thinning when you are managing a forest for wildlife habitat enhancement and diversification. On the 5th of May and again on the 7th of May, Derek Churchill came to the park and trained several volunteers on how to get the best possible results from thinning operations scheduled for late summer. KC Forester Arno Bergstrom brought Derek in to help us because of his experience and knowledge of current science relating to wildlife habitat, and complex forest structures. Areas to be skipped (no equipment or cutting), as well as all wetlands were delineated and plotted on GPS to protect sensitive areas within the park.
With funding in hand, thanks to Silverdale Rotary, work began in earnest on the teaching wetland site. As part of the regularly scheduled work party stewards began converting a gravel pit into a shallow wetland. A special thank you to Keith Asbury for loaning us his 303 Caterpillar track hoe. It made light work of the trail excavation. In order to comply with Kitsap County codes the pond will not be deeper than 18 inches, and all slopes in and out will be very gradual. Once the area drys out, we will go back in and set the standpipe and finish the grade work.
March Work Party
The third great work party in a row was held on Sunday as volunteers burned Scotch Broom on Rhodie Hill at the teaching wetland site, and chipped limbs along Old Loop Road from Deer Fern down to the Paper Birch hardwood patch. This months work party was moved to Sunday to accommodate volunteers and scouts. Beginning last fall, students from the CK Lighthouse program pulled and stacked Scotch Broom to get the new wetland site ready for native plants. A burn permit was obtained and CK Parks and CKFR approved it for a two week window. Fire fighting equipment and water was staged on Saturday and Sunday was a perfect day for a burn with no winds. We had anticipated enough volunteers to staff both projects, and a third project was conducted as the scouts worked independently on the bench installations at several locations within the park. Lunch was served at noon and the crew took a nice break next to the dying embers of Scotch Broom.
Plans to build a wetland and plant native species will be completed this spring and summer. Silverdale Rotary has funded the materials for the artificial wetland and stewards hope to get some WSU Master Gardeners interested in planting some ground cover
Students from CK Lighthouse joined stewards in the south end of the park to begin a 50 year riparian enhancement project. As is sadly the case everywhere in Kitsap County, the first thing to do is remove the noxious weeds. Once there is enough open space for sunlight to reach the ground, you need to plant native species. This area of the park has suffered substantial bear damage to 20 year old Douglas Fir trees. The bear needs sugar in the spring, and tree sap is high in sugar. If nothing else is available, bear will rip the bark off to get at the sugary sap. There are several hundred standing dead trees in this area that have been girdled by bear. We are planting Sitka Spruce instead of Douglas Fir in hopes of discouraging the bear. WDFW research on the Black Bear indicates they prefer Doug Fir. We will also plant Skunk Cabbage to give them a preferred spring forage. This riparian area is crucial to the return of Coho and Searrun Cutthroat to the park. These trees will provide afternoon shade for the nearby stream, keeping the water cool and well oxygenated. This is the first step in a long term project and we will keep you posted. Thanks to Meagan Acdal from KC Conservation District, Dalton M. from KSS Environmental Science class for help with the planting.
For a new trail map with mileages. click on PARK MAP icon under Useful Links
The most important feature of this park is you, our volunteers and stewards.