Upstream: Our Adventures in the Buglands

Upstream Site Maps (Ethan Allen Property)

 

   
 

  Student generated GPS map

Brook Stewart, Marisa Hebb, Nathan Louras

 Top: Historical map c. 1834 Bottom: Arial photo map c. 1991

 

 

The original tract was "1400 acres in one body, in which are 350 acres of choice river intervale, a quantity of swales and rich upland meadows, interspersed with the finest of wheat land and pasture land well watered and is by nature equal to any tract of the same number of acres that I ever saw" (Ethan Allen, quoted in Favretti 1985).

 

Located on Allen's property, the upstream site contains unique topographical and geological variety. We felt that a basic map of the area would help explain the land and its form. Using GPS technology we created a map that illustrated the site's diversity. This map would provide groundwork for other research groups to overlay their data. We also took pictures and drew sketches of the area to highlight its vicissitude.

The upstream area was naturally divided into three sub-sites: the riparian forest, the marsh, and the dolomite ridge forest. Each of these sub-sites has varied attributes that are a direct result of the under lying geology.

 

 

 
Lying in the flood plain of the Winooski River, the riparian forest is subject to changes in the water level. The forest elevated by the dolomite ridge is out of the river's flood plain, so it is less effected by periodic floods. The dolomite ridge also prevents water that accumulates in the wetlands from draining into the river.

 

On the first day in the field, we walked around as a group to become acquainted with the site. In order to explore the three natual sub-sites in greater detail, we broke up into four smaller groups. The groups were determined by individual interests including water studies, vegetation studies, and mapping. For three days we conducted our site studies, as well as gathering related historical information.

The Vegetation Structure Group compared the richness of different plant types (ie. trees, shrubs, ferns, etc.) in each of the three sub-sites. The Marsh Research Group compared plant zonation patterns with the underlying water depth in the marsh. The Water and Soil Research Group studied the differences in the water chemistry in the marsh, the stream, and in the Winooski river and dug soil pits to examine the changes in the land. Finally, a fourth group created the map of the upstream site using GPS.

 

  Vegetation Structure Group

 Marsh Research Group

 Water and Soil Research Group

 Photo Gallery
       

 Click here to see slide show

 Click here to see movie

* References

Favretti, J. 1985. Landscape restoration plan. Burlington, VT