We in Beverly Shores are fortunate to live in a beautiful woodland environment in the Indiana Dunes, surrounded by the Great Marsh to the south and Lake Michigan to the north. We have more biodiversity in our area than can be found just about anywhere else in the U.S. We have arctic species that are a legacy of the glaciers that dug Lake Michigan, as well as plants from the south and west, like wild orchids and prickly pear cactus.
National Park Service data (available here) show our incredible biodiversity compared to other well-known parks. The NPS measures species by “species richness”, a count of the number of total number of species present. The table below lists species richness for vascular plants at a number of national parks. The number for the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore is slightly below that for the much larger Grand Canyon, Great Smoky Mountains, and Yosemite parks, but greater than that for Yellowstone. The table also includes comparisons to other water's edge parks on the ocean coasts (Point Reyes, Acadia) and Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. Even though these units are each much larger than IDNL, they have significantly fewer plant species. The last column of the table provides a measure of species diversity by dividing species richness by park acreage. The Indiana Dunes has no biodiversity peer in this measure.
|Great Smoky Mountains||1618||521,490||0.3|
|Point Reyes N. Seashore||882||71,068||1.2|
|Sleeping Bear Dunes NL||1138||71,198||1.6|
Ken Brock, the leading authority on the birds of the Indiana Dunes was the speaker for the April 3, 2016 session of the Association of Beverly Shores Residents (ABSR) Sunday Speaker Series. The link below contains his slides from that presentation, lightly edited.Ken Brock Presentation
Our Town Marshal, Susan H. Resteau, is a talented photographer who has observed and recorded numerous birds and other creatures in Beverly Shores. ERG is pleased to provide several montages of her work below.
Terry Bonace, a part time resident of Beverly Shores for over 15 years, is a retired environmental scientist and biologist from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and a long time native plant enthusiast. He has written a number of informative Sand Tracks articles. You can find his articles on invasives here:
Annette Young, an ERG member since 2010, assists in the management and care of the Beglin Garden as well as other garden projects in our area. Through an affiliation with the Junior Master Gardener program, she educates youth in horticulture. Annette has been instrumental in initiating and shepherding the very successful Beverly Shores Garden & Art Walk. She serves on the steering committee for the Walk, sponsored since its inception by ERG.
Clicking on items in the gallery below provides access to articles on native plants and related subjects.