This phenology report is brought to you by Thomas and the students from St. Raphael Catholic School of New Hope. 

During our trip to Long Lake, winter fought back. The cold and snow didn’t stop the squirrels from chasing each other as part of their spring courtship. It sure looks like they are having fun.
Porcupines were spotted in their den trees and seemed to be happy there after a being on the move the last couple of weeks. We think that they are settling in and getting ready to give birth. After a seven-month gestation period, porcupines give birth between April and June. Maybe we’ll see some babies soon. By the way, the Long Lake teachers like to call porcupines “Stabby Squirrels”. We think that’s kind of funny.

Our school tapped maple trees, and all the trees were awake, but the sap was flowing VERRRRRY slowly, just a few drips. We were still able to taste the sap and it was sweet. When we went to collect the sap, however, it was frozen in the bucket. Our group trekked into the bog and ate the leaves of the Labrador plant and the needles from the black spruce trees.