Allegan State Game Area: Oak-Pine Barrens
Saturday, May 31, 2014
10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
4590 118th Ave, Allegan, MI 49010
The Allegan Pine Plains support a tree community typical of more northern latitudes. The abundance of jack and white pine, and hemlock is attributable to Lake Michigan moderating summer temperatures. These coniferous trees co-mingle with black, white, and red oak, as well as an association of both northern and southern grasses and wildflowers. Occurring on ancient sand dunes and on the lake plain of what historically was the bottom of Lake Michigan, this mixture of unique forests and savannas are well-conserved within the 50,000 acre Allegan State Game Area (http://www.dnr.state.mi.us/publications/pdfs/wildlife/viewingguide/slp/86Allegan/index.htm). Expect a profusion of wild lupine, puccoon, and prickly pear cactus. Hiking will be slow and mostly on flat terrain, but bring your boots and prepare your self for sun, skeeters, and ticks.
We will meet at the ASGA Headquarters (address above) at 10:00 a.m. For those wishing to carpool from the Kalamazoo area, we will leave from the carpool lot at US-131 and D Ave. at 9:15 a.m.
Tyler Bassett grew to love plants first through learning their uses, and then through an irresistible desire to give them names. He earned a B.S. in Biology from Western Michigan University in 2000. He has remained immersed in botany and ecology ever since, working as a field botanist, natural landscaper and restoration ecologist. His employers have included Kalamazoo Nature Center, Michigan Natural Features Inventory, Native Connections, as well as work as an independent consultant. He has been the president of the Southwest Chapter of the Michigan Botanical Club since 2008, and is also active with Wild Ones, Southwest Michigan Land Conservancy and the Stewardship Network. He is currently a PhD Candidate at Michigan State University in the Department of Plant Biology and Kellogg Biological Station, studying the importance of species and genetic diversity in restored ecosystems.