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 The Audubon Society of Jackson County, Michigan

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Clearcutting Cascades-Frost Campus

Monday, January 24, 2022 12:00 PM | Steve Jerant (Administrator)

A Message from
Monica Day, Big Tree coordinator
Pegg Clevenger,  JAS Member

Jackson Audubon Society is steward of the Jackson County Big Trees database and measures and keeps a list of our giant trees. Recently we found out that 10 mature oak trees were to be cut down to build a parking lot for Frost School. The ISD bought Frost from the school district for $1 and will be moving service and some students to the building after remodeling. The area north of the current bus drive adjacent to Cascades School has ten White and Bur Oak marked for removal.

Audubon’s Big Tree coordinator, Monica Day, along with JAS member, Pegg Clevenger measured the trees of this pleasant grove. The oaks appear to be in very good condition. Pegg said, “When we climbed back in the car and calculated the diameters from the circumferences and multiplied by the scientific growth factor, I was stunned into disbelief. We re-measured. The smallest tree was 191 years old! The largest is estimated to be 290 years old.”

These trees germinated pre-settlement. Bur Oak can live to be 500-years and have thick fire-resistant bark. Birders of Audubon know that oaks are the ideal wildlife plants and no other plant genus supports more species of butterflies and moths. Our birds need caterpillar-protein to support their young and the mighty oaks provide shelter as well.

Even if ISD plants many trees elsewhere, the ecosystem service these mature oaks currently provide can never be matched in a human lifetime. Their deep roots are absorbing water from the high water-table in that area, protecting property.

These ten oaks are worthy of saving. Beautiful trees build a school yard into a campus. We hope you will consider sending your opinion to the ISD:

Dave Salsbury
East Jackson School District

Doug Schedeler
Erin Slater

Jackson Public
Georgia Fojtasek
Jackson Public

Blaine Goodrich
Kevin Oxley
Superintendent, ISD

Thank you,
Monica Day, Big Tree coordinator
Pegg Clevenger, JAS Member

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