February 21, 2019 - Volunteers will be working with Ann Arbor Natural Area Preservation in six city parks to remove non-native, invasive plant species during National Invasive Species Awareness Week, Feb. 24–March 2. All are welcomed to join in the variety of week-long efforts to protect the native biodiversity of our city.
National Invasive Species Awareness Week is a nationwide effort to raise awareness of invasive species, which can significantly disrupt natural communities causing environmental or economic harm. They lack natural population controls, and that results in rapid growth and reproduction, allowing them to outcompete and replace native plants that otherwise would keep them in check in their native ecosystems. This creates a loss in habitat and food sources for wildlife. For more information about invasive, non-native plants, visit NAP's website, www.a2gov.org/NAP.
NAP will kick off the week with a:
Winter Nature Walk 10 a.m.–noon, Sunday, Feb. 24 at Furstenberg Nature Area
Participants will learn to identify native and non-native trees and shrubs. Please dress for the weather, and be prepared for a long hike. Meet at the parking lot off Fuller Road (map).
For the rest of National Invasive Species Awareness Week, NAP has volunteer workdays planned each morning. Volunteers will be taught how to identify and help remove invasive species such as honeysuckle and buckthorn at each of these events.
Monday, Feb. 25, 10 a.m.–noon
Oakwoods Nature Area
This oak-hickory woodland includes a small pond and wetland, which are great spots for birdwatching or listening for frog calls. Meet at the park entrance off of Dunwoodie (map).
Tuesday, Feb. 26, 10 a.m.–noon
Dhu Varren Woods Nature Area
This park is 13 acres of oak, hickory and maple trees. Meet at the intersection of Birchwood Drive and Dhu Varren Road (map).
Wednesday, Feb. 27, 10 a.m.–noon
Leslie Woods Nature Area
This woodland has some of the largest oaks in the Ann Arbor parks, plus a very diverse understory. Meet us at the park entrance at the north end of Upland Drive, north of Plymouth Road (map).
Thursday, Feb. 28, 10 a.m.–noon
Argo Nature Area
The oak-hickory woods here overlook Argo Pond, and owls and hawks nest in the trees. Meet in the parking lot north of the Argo Canoe Livery, off Longshore Drive (map).
Friday, March 1, 10 a.m.–noon
Arbor Hills Nature Area
Arbor Hills Nature Area is a small park, but home to an intricate community of wetlands and woods. Meet at the park entrance on Ashburnam (map).
Saturday, March 2, 10 a.m.–noon
Furstenberg Nature Area
This park along the river has high ecological diversity, including restored prairie and oak savanna. Meet in the parking lot off Fuller Road (map).
For all NAP stewardship workdays, please dress in layers and wear shoes suitable for snow or wet ground. All participants must complete a release form, and all minors should be accompanied by a guardian. Tools, snacks and know-how provided. Stewardship workday events are free. No RSVP is necessary for these events, however if you have questions, or if you'd like to volunteer with your group of 10 or more, please contact NAP at 734.794.6627 or NAP@a2gov.org.
City of Ann Arbor Natural Area Preservation (NAP) works to protect and restore Ann Arbor's natural areas and to foster an environmental ethic among its citizens. This involves conducting plant and animal inventories, ecological monitoring and stewardship projects in Ann Arbor parks. Both staff and volunteers perform these tasks. For more information about NAP, visit www.a2gov.org/NAP.
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