Mill Creek State Historic Park Wildlife Management Plan.
|dc.contributor.author||Babb, Courtney C.||en_US|
|dc.contributor.author||Olivero, Arlene P.||en_US|
|dc.coverage.spatial||Mill Creek - Cheboygan Co.||en_US|
|dc.description.abstract||Mill Creek State Historic Park, located 4 miles E of Mackinaw City, Michigan, contains a variety of land forms, flora, and fauna. Its prime resource, however, is Mill Creek, which powers the park's sawmill. The sawmill was constructed around 1780, but fell into disrepair after it was closed in 1839 due to economic depression. In 1972 three amateur archaeologists from Cheboygan discovered the mill's remains, and in 1975 Mill Creek State Historic Park came into being. Today the park attracts about 60,000 visitors a year, and only about 50% of these use a portion of the trails. The park's three main goals are to preserve archaeological and natural features, to discover the human occupation and use of the site and interpret it to the public, and to interpret the natural history of the site and the Straits of Mackinaw to the public. The park's current management objectives are to maintain a healthy, vigorous forest, to protect the park's soil and water resources, to create and maintain a variety of wildlife habitat, to provide timber for the park's sawmill, to provide a demonstration of modern forest management techniques, and to provide an entertaining outdoor educational experience for visitors. We bacame involved with Mill Creek State Historic Park when Matt Beelen contacted Jeff Dykehouse, a biologist and the park's interpretive specialist, while looking for prospective group projects. Some group members met with Jeff Dykehouse later that week and toured the park. We learned that Mill Creek had some interpretive signs on the Sugar Shack and Aspen Wildlife trails discussing wildlife management techniques, but that these techniques had not been implemented. Our project developed from this problem, and we decided to create a full wildlife management plan for the areas around both of these trails. We integrated two of the park's management objectives to form the main objective of our project: to create and maintain a variety of wildlife habitats in Mill Creek State Historic Park while providing an entertaining outdoor educational experience for its visitors. From this point we began mapping the trails and gathering data on the wildlife and vegetation of the areas. We also researched wildlife and silvicultural management techniques to determine feasible management options and their advantages and disadvantages. Specifically, we examined the possible effects of clearcutting, selection cutting, no cutting, creating a maintained clearing, and constructing brush piles and nest boxes in hardwood and aspen stands. Based on our prior knowledge, research, and our management objective, we wrote a wildlife management proposal recommending some selective cutting, leaving some of the stand to succeed naturally, and constructing nest boxes and brush piles in the Sugar Shack Trail area. In the Aspen Wildlife Trail area we recommended making a one acre demonstration clearcut, creating a small maintained opening, and constructing next boxes. We submitted this proposal to Jeff Dykehouse and later met with him to discuss it. He seemed pleased with the recommendations and the specific management information the proposal contained. Finally, we began implementing our wildlife management plan by constructing brush piles and five different kinds of next boxes. The rest of our recommendations will be implemented as time, money, and park management decisions allow. In developing this wildlife management plan we learned that about wildlife management techniques and their effects and management in general, specifically, how complex it can be. We also learned many lessons about working in groups, one of which was that each individual has different priorities and perspectives which can make decision-maing difficult but should be respected. Finally, we learned that although working in large groups can be inconvenient at times, our combined efforts produced a far better project than any of us could have produced alone.||en_US|
|dc.relation.haspart||Diagram or Illustration||en_US|
|dc.relation.haspart||Table of Numbers||en_US|
|dc.subject||Nat. Res. Problem Solving||en_US|
|dc.title||Mill Creek State Historic Park Wildlife Management Plan.||en_US|
|dc.subject.hlbsecondlevel||Natural Resource and Environment||en_US|
|dc.contributor.affiliationum||Biological Station, University of Michigan||en_US|
|dc.description.filedescription||Description of 2840.pdf : Access restricted to on-site users at the U-M Biological Station.||en_US|
|dc.owningcollname||Biological Station, University of Michigan (UMBS)|
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