Miami Woods Forest Preserve Restoration 2004 Annual Report Released
Wednesday, January 12, 2005
Cook County, Illinois. Forest Preserve District Commissioner Larry Suffredin, 13th District, announces the completion of the 2004 annual report "Restoring Nature in Miami Woods and Prairie" by Miami Woods master stewards Kent and Jerry Fuller. The report highlights volunteer work completed at Miami Woods in 2004 and urges the District to undertake additional management practices to ensure the future health of the woods and prairie.
The 2004 report includes the following highlights:
· 21 work day events drew 736 volunteers who completed 1,925 hours of hands-on work.
· The value of the volunteer work is estimated at $38,500.
· 450 students from around Cook County participated in 560 hours of educational activities.
· Limited restoration activities resumed at Miami Woods in 2002. Priority has been given to rescuing previously restored areas which were allowed to deteriorate during the restoration moratorium period, in place from September 1996 to 2001.
· Limited ecological recovery is underway in many areas of the woods but the prairie, and the site in general, continues to deteriorate due to invasive species, excessive browsing by deer and the continuing absence of controlled burns.
The full text of the report can be found on Commissioner Suffredin's website, http://www.suffredin.org/main/taskforces/forestpreserves.asp.
"I want to thank master stewards Kent and Jerry Fuller and all the volunteers who worked at Miami Woods in 2004. Their efforts represent a significant contribution to the Forest Preserve District and have been vital in resuming work that restores health to the land," commented Suffredin.
Commissioner Suffredin added, "The District has done a great job working with the master stewards and volunteers but it is critical that full restoration activities be allowed to resume and that the District work to address the overabundant deer population which has increased beyond the carrying capacity of the land."
The Miami Woods Forest Preserve includes 112 aces of land stretching along the west side of the North Branch of the Chicago River from Oakton Street north to Dempster Street and is bounded on the west side by Caldwell Avenue and Waukegan Road.
Kent and Jerry Fuller are certified by the Forest Preserve District of Cook County as the master stewards of Miami Woods. The Fullers are members of the North Branch Restoration Project, the local group that works with the Forest Preserve District to establish the management plan and work schedules for the Preserve.