Monday, March 22, 2010

10 - OCVN Week 4

Week 4 we met at Buck Creek State Park in Springfield - nice name but we didn't really get to see much of the park. For the classroom part of the day Marne Titchenell from OSU presented a powerpoint show with color pictures on The Wonderful World of Relationships. We learned what "ecology" means, and the difference between abiotic,biotic, and symbiotic relationships. Ha! Who ever knew there were so many "otics." I enjoyed learning about the food chain and seeing the nice pictures of animals.

Joe Bonnell presented a powerpoint show on Ecosystems and Ecoregions. His pictures didn't have the nice color that Marne's show had. But he did have good content- covering ecosystem interactions, factors affecting the distribution of plants and animals, unique ecosystems in Ohio, ecoregions, and ecosystem services.

After lunch Melissa Moser, ODNR ecologist, talked to us about Stewardship - another interesting powerpoint presentation. What would we do without computers?

At the end of the day we drove to a fen, which was a mile away. What is a fen you ask? I asked the same thing. The dictionary says a bog/marsh. However, I learned that the difference is that a fen has running water whereas a marsh has stagnant water. The McClarren fen we visited has underground aquifers feeding it. We were also told that Massasauga rattlesnakes lived in the area. (I wasn't about to look under any rocks or step off the wood plank trail.) The snake is one of two rattlers in Ohio, the other being the timber rattlesnake. We didn't really see much growing at the fen except for skunk cabbage.
But, it gave us an opportunity to get out of the classroom and into the world of nature.


  1. I didn't know there was a difference between a fen and a marsh. Learn something new every day -- or at least I do if I read your blog!