Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Nosehill Park and Edworthy Park by Nicole and Samuel

Figure 1.  Grassland in Nosehill Park field
trip(copyright Nicole and Samuel).

Figure 2.  Grassland in Edworthy Park
Group Trip(copyright Nicole and Samuel)

Figure 3. 
Map of Nosehill Park (Google map, 2010).

Figure 5.  Nosehill Park field trip
(copyright Nicole and Samuel)

    Nosehill Park( figures 1 and 3) and Edworthy Park (figures 2 and 4) are two of the most popular parks in Calgary. For people who enjoy having a walk or spending time with their family, here are the comparisons of these two parks.

    Nose Hill Park was opened in 1980, with a total square foot of 11.27 kilometres. Nose hill Park is the second largest park in Calgary. It is located on 5620 14 St. N.W. surrounded by 12 residential communities (City of Calgary, 2010). The park has a large diversity of animals, for example, deer and coyotes can be found in this grassland.
    Northern pocket Gophers are also one of the major animals that could be found in Nose hill Park. Their major job is to improve the nutrients of the soil. Therefore, the soil in Nose hill Park is in a good condition.
Figure 6.  Edworthy park and the
transect used to find  the incline
of the hill (copyright @ Nicole and
    As we have mentioned before, Nose hill Park is a great place to spend time with families or friends. The park features public facilities, such as hiking trails, resting benches, public restrooms and also designated off- leash areas (City of Calgary, 2010). Also, a great place to rest your mind AFTER work, school and other responsibilities the people have to accomplish in a day. All this is very stressing. Too add on, Nose hill Park is a quiet and peaceful place to walk alone to clear anything that’s disturbing your mind at the moment. Nose hill Park is one of the most undisturbed Parks in Calgary, because the massive size of the land and not too many people visit this park as much as either Edworthy or Bowness Park.
    Nose hill Park was made up from land between the low valley of Brentwood and Dalhousie, which low land may block pollutants from the upper residential areas to flow pollutants down to the near low land.

Edworthy Park
    Edworthy Park was opened in 1995, fifteen years later than Nose hill Park. It is located at pproximate an area total of 1.27 square kilometres (Calgary area, 2010). It is definitely easier to access from the Northwest because it is located at the bottom of Shaganappi Trail. 5050 Spruce Dr. S.W.
    In the summer, you could easily spend hours here for picnics with your family or friends. However Edworthy Park is not big in size when you compare it to Nose hill Park. If you are craving some privacy or space from people, Edworthy is not the place to go. Here are some of the park features and facilities: playground, picnic sites, picnic shelters, pathways, and a gazebo for kids, BBQ pits and stands, picnic tables, benches, and public restrooms.
     The pathways are neat and densely treed but the negative part is that, walkers and bikers have to share the road and the space, so if you have small children with you, make sure they are out of the way since visibility isn't always excellent with so many trees around. 
     The surface area of Edworthy Park’s ground  are generally covered by large trees on the top as well as grass and mosses on the ground level, where as the surface of Nose hill is covered by mostly tall grasses while in winter. The ground is simply bare, thus Edworthy Park is more insulated than Nose hill. The rate of evaporation and sublimation of moisture or snow are much slower in Edworthy Park and quicker in Nose hill Park. Nose hill Park is a drier, more temperature vary ecosystem than Edworthy Park.

Edworthy Park is likely to be disturbed most of the time. If the park catches on a fire, the secondary succession in Edworthy will mainly consist of trees, which is different than Nose hill Park. The trees will take a long time, or even decades to grow back. On the other hand, tall grass in Nose hill will only require about a year to grow back in the latest.
Figure 7.  In our biome area, we found
a grasshopper lies on a long grass.(copyright 
Nicole  and Samuel)
Nose hill gets more wind at ground level since it doesn’t have the shelter of an abundance of trees to cover the ground like Edworthy Park does. With more wind at ground level, evaporation or sublimation rates would increase and snow cover on the ground would decrease.
Figure 8.  Saskatoon bush, a common plant
on Nose Hill.

Figure 9.  Long grass found on Nose
Hill (copyright Nicole and Samuel).
  Plants that can be easily found in Nose hill Park are Saskatoon (figure 8), bergamot and long grass (figure 9).  The day we took a trip to Nose hill Park, the weather wasn’t so friendly and also, we went as a large group which could have disturbed the organisms or animals that were around.   However, the day we visited Edworthy Park, it was bright and sunny that we found a grasshopper (Figure 7). 
    Usually, in Nose hill Park, plants such as parry oat grass, prairie crocus, golden bean, bedstraw and sage are to be found. Deer or Coyote would be types of animal that could be seen in grassland areas as well.

Figure 10.  Wild Rose, a plant found in Edworthy
Park.  (copyright Nicole and Samuel)
    On the other hand, in Edworthy Park, there seem to be variety types of plants around than Nose hill Park.
Figure 11.  Goldenrod, another plant
found in Edworthy Park.
(copyright Nicole and Samuel)
Figure 12.  A common Aster found
on Edworthy Park. (copyright Nicole and Samuel)
Figure 15. 
Figure 13.  Long grass, the most common
grass in Edworthy Park.
(copyright Nicole and Samuel)

    Edworthy Park is bounded by the Bow River. Living in such a dry area as Calgary, being in Edworthy will feel like somewhere else. Nose Hill’s humidity is 38 percent and Edworthy is 43 percent. An area that is close or surrounded by a river or any water substances changes the percentage of humidity. It makes the area moisturized and humid. The more moisturized and water in Edworthy makes this park a much more suitable area for plants and trees to grow.  That could be one of the reasons why a variety of plants and animals are found in Edworthy Park. The process of seepage from the Bow River to Edworthy Park’s soil benefits in many ways such as, the growth and conditions of plants and trees.  When trees and plants are healthy, the animals such as deer or rabbits will be in a good condition as well because its main food source is the plants and trees. It’s exactly the same as having McDonalds everyday, this will damage your body and digestive system very bad. Also, the process of drying a chunk of soil from Nose Hill took about a day but for the soil from Edworthy Park, maximum 5 to 6 days were needed to dry it completely.

Figure 14.  Grasshopper found in
Edworthy Park.  colour changed to
dark brown after a few days.
(copyright Nicole and Samuel)

  Nose Hill retains less moisture; however, Nose hill is hotter during the summer and colder during the winter. Nose hill Park is south-facing and this area receives more direct sunlight as well as warm winds coming from the south. Still, Nose Hill Park would have frozen soil in the winter or during the winter as Calgary drops temperature.  

Figure 15.  Dogs affect Edworthy Park.
(Sangmin, K. 2010)
    Edworthy Park will feel like a park for dogs since there are many dogs running around all the times. In fact, it is a recommended place to have a walk with dogs since it’s a nice place to rest and play. Though Nose Hill Park does allow dogs, Edworthy Park could be defined as a dog day care. The people usually think that the waste of any type of living organisms can be a good source of fertilizer to the soil. That’s not quite true. The wastes from the dogs aren’t a great idea to use as a fertilizer. Their major food is meat, which digests and comes out as a waste. It doesn’t contain beneficial chemicals but contains lots of harmful chemicals. There are methods to use the waste as a fertilizer, such as breaking down the harmful chemicals and bacteria but it’s not an easy job since it’s done in a nature environment, not at home. Just like dog’s urine kills the grass and leaves a spot, waste won’t be helpful at all. So, this would harm the grass or soils of Edworthy park more than Nose Hill Park.

Figure 16. 
image of soil digging out
in Nosehill Park
(copyright Nicole and Samuel).

   Nose Hill Park Declined from heavy use of informal trails and unmanaged off-leash dog activities. Dogs were a part of main causes of the Nose Hill Park to contribute to the decline and loss of important wildlife species.

    Nose Hill Park is surrounded by 12 residential communities but Edworthy Park isn’t. The important fact is that, Nose Hill gets fewer disturbances from the human being than Edworthy Park, though Nose Hill Park has 12 residential communities. Once again, Edworthy Park has high quality facility compare to Nose Hill Park.

Figure 17.  image of soil digging out in Nosehill Park (copyright Nicole and Samuel).
     Edworthy Park has an area of 1.27 square kilometres when Nose Hill Park is a total of 11.27 square kilometres. The differences in size of those two parks are 10 square kilometres. Therefore, Nose Hill Park could be a better place for organisms or any plants to grow because of its size. 

    An interesting fact about Nose Hill Park’s history is that, in the late 1800’s, European settlers used the grassland for farming and ranching. They planted agricultural crops and later on, some of these areas were turned into native grassland (Calgary plus, 2010).
Figure 18.  Inclination of a sample area of Nosehill Park’s grassland. Bumpy land, sloppy holes collapse on the grassland in Nosehill (copyright Nicole and Samuel).
    For Edworthy Park, it was bought by a man named Thomas Edworthy in 1883. Edworthy recognized a profitable garden market that has fresh fruit and vegetables to railway crews and etc. Later years, sandstone was discovered on his property so he operated sandstone quarries for buildings in Calgary. Finally in 1962, the park was purchased by the city of Calgary (Calgary plus, 2010).

    Although Edworthy Park and Nose Hill Park are in the same city, many differences could be found between these two parks. For example, the location of these parks affect on the plants, soils, and etc, as well as the styles and the environment changes what it’s like in these parks.

Figure 19.  Inclination of sample area in
Edworthy Park’s grassland,
straight plain grass field was
found in Edworthy Park grassland
(copyright Nicole and Samuel).

To end our today’s posting,
What would be a better choice to visit? Please comment below!

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