Get Your Feet Wet

If you please recall my first post, the Great Trinity Forest is a bottomland hardwood forest. That’s a fancy term for river swamp. But I didn’t really know what it meant until I experienced it for myself.

On May 13, I went to do field work with Shannon and graduate student Tom Green. It had rained almost an inch the day before, and we were lucky it wasn’t raining that morning. As we took the path into the forest, our shoes were soon heavy with mud. The GPS unit led us to the first sample plot of the day, and we passed puddles that kept getting larger and larger until they were unavoidable. In fact, the puddle was larger than the sample plot. We hadn’t seen the forest like this before, so we weren’t wearing rain boots. “For science!” we exclaimed while water soaked through our shoes and socks to our feet.

It was really interesting to be in the flooded forest. The flooding is a distinctive characteristic of the Great Trinity Forest, it’s what makes it unique. Because of this flooding, the forest has an impact on water quality and stream recharge – which are important things to consider in a city concerned with drought.

Water is a big issue right now. Protecting forests could be a way to keep it clean and available. That’s just one way a bottomland forest is great. It’s also fun to get your feet wet 🙂


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