Saturday, May 1, 2010

Michael Kudish Natural History Preserve

We took a break from the fields and joined Dr. Michael Kudish and Dave Turan for a hike through the foreest of the Mike Kudish Natural History Preserve in Stamford, NY

As a professor emeritus in the Division of Forestry at Paul Smith's College, he has also written four books on the vegetation of the Adirondacks, including Adirondack Upland Flora, The Catskill Forest: A History and a number of articles on forest history of both the Catskills and Adirondacks

The following is an except from “The Catskill Forest: A History” Purple Mountain Press, 2000:

“ …{h}e began a life-long study of the history of these forests, beginning with Vegetation History of the Catskill High Peaks, his dissertation at the New York State College of Environmental Science and Forestry at Syracuse University in 1971. In the intervening 39 years, his study has expanded to include an examination of Catskills soils, climate, ecological personalities of tree species, human disturbance and history, and the history recorded in the rings of living and just-fallen trees. Such examination could push the clock back only 300 to 400 years, the maximum age of the oldest living trees and of the writings of European settlers. In 1994, he realized that tree fossils preserved at high-elevation peat bogs also could be used to reconstruct forest history and that the age of the peat could be determined by radiocarbon dating. Forest history has now been pushed back to 14,000 years”

photos by kara blossom

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