Woodlands Management Committee Meeting Minutes

April 16, 2008


Attendees: Martha Dwyer-Bergman, Josh Bingham, Scott Goldthwaite, Judy Edwards, Jerry Uhrig




Minutes from the previous meeting are on the website.


Status Reports


Deer - Mark Weiss, our contact for New Jersey Bow Hunters, is also the representative for Hobie kayaks. Some of their models are good fishing kayaks and attracted a lot of interest at the recent Paddlesport Expo. Jerry saw Mark there but he was too busy speaking to interested customers. So Jerry followed up with an email, and Mark told him that they are ready to hunt deer in Mountain Lakes this coming season. Mark had asked for a letter of support from the Borough, and Joe Tempesta provided one.


Martha mentioned that she saw 8 deer on Arden Road a week ago at the Denville /Mountain Lakes line.  Scott saw 2 deer today on Crestview.


Woodlands Health Monitoring - Jerry has not been able to check on the sentinel seedlings recently - too busy. We will make the final assessment in June.


Ailanthus Street Trees - We have been trying an experiment to prevent the three ailanthus street trees taken down recently from resprouting. Ailanthus wood is proving to be very difficult to drill.  For the most part, we have been able to drill 1/2 inch holes to an acceptable depth. Any larger hole seizes the bit. We have tried hand drilling with brace and bit and power drilling with heavy-duty drills and bits. So we have to be content with the 1/2-inch holes and keep them filled with rock salt.


Bears - June 11th at 7:30 at the Mountain Lakes Public Library there will be a lecture on Bears in Your Backyard: How to live with bears in your area.  It will be given by a New Jersey DEP specialist, Michelle Ruggiero.  She gave a bear seminar about five years ago. Phil is arranging the program and publicity.


Scott said that he videotaped a bear in his yard and put it on Youtube “Crestview Bear”


Wildflowers/Vernal Pools: At our March meeting Phil suggested that we try to adjourn early and get out to the woodlands to see some wildflowers and vernal pools. We tentatively planned to do this in April when the vernal pools should be pretty busy. But it didn't work out because the wildflowers haven't really appeared yet.


Jerry checked on the wildflowers that are in bloom and suggested that it is a bit early to see them in the wild but that Halsey Frederick Park has the beginnings of trout lilies peaking through.  The Wildflower Trail in the Tourne County Park has a lot more to see.


Vernal pools: spring peepers and wood frogs (they sound like ducks) can be heard in the pools.  Mole salamanders are probably finished breeding but the egg masses might be visible.  Scott said that he saw egg masses in Blairstown with the Boy Scouts.  It is not certain that we have mole salamanders in our area.  Jerry said that he would give Scott a guide to Vernal pools and a CD with the sounds of the frogs and toads for the scouts.


Topics for discussion:


Deer Exclosures - We have not marked specific locations for the two remaining exclosures yet. We have been waiting for the hay-scented fern to appear. There was a thought of putting up nylon cable to add support to the fence to prevent it from being knocked down by branches but the vendor advised that the tension would be more than the posts could handle.  Thus, the fence will have to be repaired.  Josh said that he found another wire in the ground at the Crestview site.  A possible new site for an enclosure is off of Maple Way.


Invasives Field Work Plans -


Publicity for Invasive work: there is a picture on the website of three volunteers working at the Sled Run site to remove Japanese barberry.  Jerry made a DVD of the rest of the pictures.  Martha mentioned that at the League of Women Voters they highlighted the Woodlands work and the website. 


Judy Edwards is the “Suzy Lakers” website creator for the League and is dovetailing Woodlands information into the environmental focus of the League’s website. 


Judy asked for a good reason why people should not be putting leaves into the woodlands. We offered: because it kills the young plants/seedlings and stresses the trees.  Josh mentioned that the Boy scouts will pick up bagged leaves from your yard at a cost of $1.00 per bag.


Garden Club had a lecture this morning and one of the comments was that stilt grass must be hand pulled.  The lecturer was from Rutgers.  Weeds Gone Wild is a website that explains how to remove invasive.


Work Days: April 26th Halsey Fredrick - Mixed venue Garlic Mustard.

May 31st  Birchwood – garlic mustard and multi flora rose.

We have not set the remaining workdays for the year but there will be one a month through November.


Martha asked the status of the Devil’s Walking Sticks that are on Laurel Hill and the boulevard.  Jerry said that chain saws will be needed to remove them.



Other topics:


Martha saw a wild turkey on Pocono Road twice in the past few weeks and there have been sightings of them in the Village.


A NY/NJ Trail Conference Trail Maintenance workshop is scheduled for April 26.  Scott will be attending.


Jerry said that former Trails Committee members will continue to identify trail maintenance needs and report them to DPW.


Martha mentioned that there is a large ditch on the woodlands on Pocono Road going into the playing fields and that there were two men working on cleaning it out. She will investigate further