• Full moon (Worm Moon or Sap Moon) – March 5th   New Moon – March 20th

• The true hibernators, chipmunks, groundhogs  and bats begin to emerge from hibernation.

•  Most animals emerging from their winter slumber called “torpor”.  Smell the skunks?Opossums are out and about and  bears are coming out of their dens.

• Spring Migration is in full swing. Look for ducks, geese, and swans. Keep a watchful eye out for the first turkey vultures in early/mid March.

• Redwing Blackbirds, Tree Swallows, Blue Birds and Eastern Phoebe’s return.

• Warm, sunny days will bring out Mourning Cloak and Angle Wing butterflies to sip on tree sap flowing from wounded trees.

• Buds on the Red Maple twigs begin to turn a deep red color as they begin to swell.

• Skunk Cabbage emerging and flowering in wetland areas. Marsh Marigolds will be next!

• Eagles and Owls are feeding their newly-hatched young by the end of the month.

• Squirrel’s are  being born. Female bears, called “sows”, emerge from their dens with their cubs.

• The great awaking is occurring. Wood Frogs, Spring Peepers, Western Chorus Frogs and a few others begin their chorus of sound.

• Jefferson and Yellow Spotted salamanders move into the vernal pools and begin breeding.

• Look for the first wildflowers of the season: Spring Beauties, Harbingers of Spring, Cutleaf Tooth Wort, Blood Root, Dutchman’s Britches, and Rue Anemone to name a few.

• Snakes and turtles emerge from winter dormancy as the days warm up. Look for them on rocks and logs.

• It’s time for the dreaded Garlic Mustard to show itself!. Bring a bag and pull it!!

• Insects begin buzzing. Watch out for the Black Flies. They bite and it hurts!

Make sure to check out http://portageparkdistrict.org for upcoming programs and hikes!

Upcoming Programs

Birding for the Ordinary Average Guy/Gal

Come join Portage Park District volunteer Naturalist Joe Malmisur and Dr. Sarah Mabey on Monday March 9th  for the fifth in the Park District’s birding series. It doesn’t matter if you did not attend prior sessions. There is always a brief review of things that were covered. The fifth  session will focus on Bird songs and vocalizations. Expert Birder, Dave Hochadel, will discuss how to ID birds by ear.  Also discussed will be the early waterfowl migrants and the upcoming Birding hikes in April.  Program is from  7:00pm-9:00pm in the Senior Center 705 Oakwood St. Ravenna Ohio.

Celebrate the Spring Equinox

Come join Portage Park District volunteer Naturalist Joe Malmisur and Sky Ranger Guy Gillespie as we celebrate the first day of spring,  March 20th. During the evening we will discuss the signs of the Zodiac and find them in the nights sky. We will discuss myths about the equinox and the Ides of March. And finally, we will talk about the myths surrounding several spring Constellations and locate them in the night sky. Lets hope for clear skies! A warm fire and  hot chocolate will take the chill off if the night is cold.  Program is from 7:00pm-9:00pm at the Morgan Preserve parking lot on Rt 44 just south of Rt 303.

On the Hunt…

Come join Portage Park District volunteer Naturalist Joe Malmisur and Matt Sorrick from Hiram College as we hunt for the elusive blue and yellow spotted creatures for the black lagoon.

Well actually they are Jefferson and Yellow Spotted Salamanders. The only time these amphibians come out of their underground homes  is for a few days as they move to vernal pools to breed. We will also be looking for wood frogs, spring peepers, western chorus frogs among others. Program is from 7:30pm – 9:30pm at Dix Park on Rt 44.

Upcoming Hikes

March 15 – Signs of Spring  – Towner’s Woods 2:00pm-4:00pm

April 4   – Birding for the Ordinary Guy Bird Walk – Berlin Lake Trail 7:30am

April 4 – Lunar Eclipse/Vernal Pool Skinny Dip (Frogs and Salamanders only) Morgan Preserve Parking lot Rt. 44  8:00pm-10:00pm

April 11 – Birding for the Ordinary Guy Bird Walk  – Seneca Ponds 7:30 am

April 11 – Wildflower Scavenger Hunt  – Shaw Woods – 10:30am – 12:30pm

April 18 – Birding for the Ordinary Guy Bird walk  – Morgan Preserve 7:30am

April 25– Birding for the Ordinary Guy Bird walk  – Shaw Woods 7:30am

May 2 – Birding for the Ordinary Guy Bird walk – Towner’s Woods 7:30