The calls of red-winged blackbirds are returning to Northern Michigan just as our cattail marshes, their preferred nesting habitat, swell with snowmelt. Soon their sunset songs will be joined by a chorus of all kinds of frogs and buzzing insects, drawn to the same wetlands for the very same reasons: to breed, lay eggs and contribute more vitality to these places already teeming with life. … More Why Do Wetlands Matter?
Huron Pines will assist Alabaster Township with an online public meeting March 8 at 5pm to receive comments on the 145-acre parcel of Lake Huron property that has been purchased by Huron Pines and is to become an Alabaster Township park. … More Public Hearing for Lake Huron Coastal Preserve
The massive sheet of ice which shaped Michigan thousands of years ago is long gone but its impact remains. Along the northern Lake Huron coast, the glacier scraped away material right down to bedrock. Further inland, the mile-thick ice deposited huge amounts of earth in rolling hills as it receded. This is the foundation of Northern Michigan’s diverse forest cover. … More Know your landscape from the ground, up
This is the first in a series of conversations with some of our 2020 Huron Pines AmeriCorps members sharing highlights and takeaways from their service. For Shelby Cain, this has meant shifting her service year around both a pandemic and a 500-year flood event impacting her Midland host site. … More Q&A with Huron Pines AmeriCorps Member Shelby Cain
Friends of the Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary received a $25,000 grant to expand their existing “living roof” project to maximize the overall green roof footprint and cover as much available roof surface space as possible with vegetation to reduce the impact of stormwater runoff on the Thunder Bay River and Lake Huron. … More Lake Huron Forever Initiative Awards $50,000 to Support Great Lakes Health
The official wildflower of the Great Lakes State is right at home anywhere it can get its feet wet along the rocky coast of Northern Lake Huron, but those places are getting harder to come by. This pint-sized perennial is known for its deep blue flowers that emerge mere inches above the ground for a fleeting few weeks in May and June. It’s a bit of a miracle this fragile flower exists at all. … More Our Wildflower: Protecting the Rare Habitat of the Dwarf Lake Iris
The Blanding’s turtle is distinguished by its helmetlike shell and mustard-yellow throat. Though not federally listed as an endangered species, it is one of special concern in Michigan where its habitats have been fragmented. As development increases in Northern Michigan, especially near coastal and wetland areas, the turtle’s habitat is disrupted by new construction, increased traffic and a shifting landscape. … More Slow and Steady: How Connected Lands Help Blanding’s Turtle Stay in the Race
On the remote shore of Negwegon State Park, where Lake Huron’s rugged coast gives way to long, narrow sand dunes, one of Michigan’s rarest plants is hanging on.For most of its life, the Pitcher’s thistle is a wispy tangle of short, silver-green stems.Below ground, the plant will spend the better part of a decade sending a taproot 6 feet down. … More Treasures in the Sand: Protecting One of Michigan’s Rarest Plants
Welcome to the first installment of The Nature of Things, a monthly discussion with Huron Pines on environmental and conservation-related topics. This column is shared with newspapers across Northeast Michigan to help build an understanding within the communities we work in hopes of engaging future partners and volunteers in shared conservation goals. By Chris Engle … More What Is Stormwater?