The Wilder Side of Oakland County
Oakland County encompasses 868 square miles of diverse landscape and has 40 square miles of water. Cataclysmic, earth-sculpting glaciation action 11,000 years ago shaped the landmass we know as Oakland County. Thanks to that sculpting, the county has more than 1,400 lakes, numerous streams, creeks, bogs and wetlands in six major watersheds. The hilly woodlands are dotted with vernal ponds, impressive elevation changes, and hundreds of thousands of big oak trees, thus the name Oakland County.
One of the best ways to experience the county’s rich natural resources is on foot. Hundreds of miles of trails await visitors, with ever expanding connectivity. Dozens of large quality parks and nature sanctuaries, including the 13 premier parks managed by Oakland County Parks, provide an excellent wildlife habitat. Hikers, birders, photographers and families out for an end of the year walk, can easily find peaceful places to pursue their outdoor passions, or quiet solitude. So as Christmas week winds down, and a new year of adventuring in the woods, meadows, lake shores and trails begins, I share some of my favorite wildlife images captured in 2015 on the Wilder Side of Oakland County. I wish everyone the best of a nature-rich New Year! – Jonathan
Text and photos by Jonathan Schechter, Nature Education Writer for Oakland County Parks.