Back to Top

Monthly Archives: January 2018

In the News: Waterways Getting Saltier

Photo by Thomas Brueckner

Both the Associated Press and the Washington Post have articles about how road salt is affecting our rivers, streams, and brooks:

Washington Post: The nation’s rivers and streams are getting dangerously saltier

Associated Press on ABC News: Turning to beet juice and beer to address road salt danger

In the News: Fighting Invasive Trees

From the US Forest Service:

A Native Fungus Takes on an Exotic and Aggressive Tree Species

Scientists find a native fungus capable of destroying invasive Ailanthus while preserving native species.

Ailanthus photo

Photographer Luis Fernández García


Notes from Donker Farm: Walking (and waddling) into the New Year

Image of goose tracks in snow

BRRR! The heat of summer and mild days of autumn feel especially far behind us lately. The snow and frigid temperatures have shifted farm care from a leisurely, meandering activity to an all business affair. While the animals don’t seem bothered by the weather, the human helpers are having to bundle up to stay warm while taking care of usual farm chores and contending with winter challenges like freezing water buckets and shovelling access to the chicken coop and sheep barn.

If you can get past the cold, winter comes with it’s own special set of perks.

The farm is beautiful in all seasons. There’s something especially striking about the red paint of the barn against a backdrop of snow, and the lasting low temperatures allowed farm matriarch and resident artist, Elisabeth, to hang the ice rings along the edge of Tory Fort Lane.

After a busy summer and fall of doing — integrating a new sheep, raising baby chicks, cleaning debris from the paddock and replacing gates and lengths of fencing — the winter chill is forcing us indoors and allowing us time to plan for the spring ahead. Will we add to the flock? Raise another round of chicks? How can we engage more people at the farm? What projects will we tackle next? This could be our most exciting year on the farm yet, and we’re looking forward to keeping you up to date on all of the exciting happenings and changes to come!

Interested in helping out at Donker Farm or general volunteering? See our Volunteering section!


Conservation Corridors in Urbanized Landscapes

“…research by Nick Haddad, a conservation biologist at the University of Michigan’s W.K. Kellogg Biological Station, has demonstrated substantial improvements in biodiversity from corridors as little as 25 yards in width, well within the range, he says, of “what’s reasonable in urban landscapes.”


Habitat on the Edges: Making Room for Wildlife in an Urbanized World

Efforts to protect biodiversity are now focusing less on preserving pristine areas and more on finding room for wildlife on the margins of human development. As urban areas keep expanding, it is increasingly the only way to allow species to survive.

%d bloggers like this: