Thirteen members and friends enjoyed a bright winter day walking through the Munn tract, located just west of Codrington. The hike was followed by a casual get-together over lunch at the Codrington Community Centre.
Winter is a naturally quiet time in the outdoors but the recent snow layer revealed lots of mammal activity with tracks of White-tailed Deer, Red Fox, Coyote, Eastern Gray Squirrel, and White-footed/Deer Mouse. A Raccoon that had been found the day before was still sleeping in exactly the same spot, probably not having ever left its cozy tree cavity.
Bird activity was fairly quiet but the runaway favourite being the Pileated Woodpecker that flew past us, then returned and landed above our heads in response to a Barred Owl imitation. Another fun sighting was a Red-tailed Hawk along the roadside being dive-bombed by mobbing crows. Other species seen included Black-capped Chickadee, White-breasted Nuthatch and Hairy Woodpecker.
The forest always looks simple in winter, when the leaves are off and the ground covered in snow. But this quiet, leafless period is also a wonderful time to see forest structure, species diversity, and all the native trees regenerating under the pine plantation canopy. These plantations that the Munn family established so many years ago are doing their job as a nursery for a much more diverse, biologically important forest that will emerge over the next few decades.
This property is an invaluable tribute to the Munn family’s foresight, and we are deeply indebted to them for their generous donation to Lone Pine.