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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Near Florissant in Teller County, Colorado — The American Mountains (Southwest)
 

Florissant Valley Today

 
 
Florissant Valley Today Marker image. Click for full size.
By William Fischer, Jr., October 11, 2020
1. Florissant Valley Today Marker
Inscription.  

Open stands of ponderosa pine, Douglas fir, and quaking aspen now dominate the slopes of the Florissant valley. The ecosystem has changed since the days of the dense redwood forests. There are more open grasslands and the cold temperate forest is less diverse, with fewer broad-leaved plants. Where there once was a lake and forested valley bottom, a flower-filled meadow now blooms in the summer. Plants and animals found here today thrive in a cold, dry climate.

Plants and Animals of the Florissant Valley
The grasslands and open forests of today's Montane ecosystem support a variety of wildlife. Abert's squirrels, with their distinctive tasseled ears, depend upon ponderosa pines for food and shelter. Northern flickers chip new nests into the pines each year, leaving their old homes for other birds to occupy. From the sky, golden eagles scan the meadows for their ground squirrel prey.

The meadow wildflowers attract pollinators like hummingbirds. Fairy trumpet is designed for these birds' long tongue and attraction to red. Wapiti hide in the woods but graze the meadow grasses. They keep a keen watch for stalking mountain lions.

Florissant Valley Today Marker Detail image. Click for full size.
By William Fischer, Jr., October 11, 2020
2. Florissant Valley Today Marker Detail
Modern ecological niches parallel those of the Eocene, but a top predator has yet to be found in the fossil record.

[Marker Key]
1
Ponderosa Pine • Pinus ponderosa

2 Mountain Lion • Puma oncolor

3 Fairy Trumpet • Ipomopsis aggregata

4 Rufous Hummingbird • Selasphorus rufus

5 Wapiti (Elk) • Cervus elaphus

6 Golden Eagle • Aquila chrysaetos

7 Brush-footed Butterfly • Poladryas arachne

8 One-sided Penstemon • Penstemon virgatus

9 Mountain Muhly • Muhlenbergia montana

10 Quaking Aspen • Populus tremuloides

11 Douglas Fir • Psuedotsuga menziesii

12 Abert's Squirrel • Sciurus aberti

13 Northern Flicker • Colaptes auratus

14 Richardson's Ground Squirrel • Spermophilus richardsonii

15 Longhorn Beetle • Monochamus sp.


 
Erected by National Park Service.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: AnimalsEnvironmentParks & Recreational Areas.
 
Location. 38° 54.807′ N, 105° 17.187′ W. Marker is near Florissant, Colorado, in Teller County. Marker

Florissant Valley Today Marker image. Click for full size.
By William Fischer, Jr., October 11, 2020
3. Florissant Valley Today Marker
Second marker from right
is under the large Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument pavilion covering exposed petrified Redwood stumps, west of the Visitor Center. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 15807 County Road 1, Florissant CO 80816, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Delicate Impressions (here, next to this marker); Dawn of the Recent Past (here, next to this marker); Reading the Rings (here, next to this marker); Layers of Time (a few steps from this marker); Is the Trio in Trouble? (a few steps from this marker); Just One Piece at a Time (a few steps from this marker); Ancient Clones (a few steps from this marker); Ancient Forest Diversity (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Florissant.
 
Related marker. Click here for another marker that is related to this marker.
 
Also see . . .
1. Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument. (Submitted on October 22, 2020, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
2. Florissant's Natural Features & Ecosystems. (Submitted on October 22, 2020, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on October 22, 2020. It was originally submitted on October 22, 2020, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. This page has been viewed 47 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on October 22, 2020, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.
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Mar. 7, 2021