FROM READERS: Derrick Fogle shares picture-a-day series of Flat Branch

Wednesday, April 3, 2013 | 6:00 a.m. CDT; updated 3:30 p.m. CDT, Wednesday, April 3, 2013
Derrick Fogle has taken a picture every day this year of the same spot at Flat Branch. This image is from Wednesday.

Derrick Fogle is known by some as Columbia's "Hack Man",  frequenting Liberty Plaza or Speakers Circle to put on a show with his footbags, boom box and camera. He works at MU as the Lead Audio Visual Systems Engineer and is a frequent commenter on the Missourian's website.

The Flat Branch Creek Picture a Day Series is designed to bring awareness to nature, the environment, and the health of Flat Branch specifically. Fire damage to the creek last year brought some interest to this subject, and I wanted to springboard off that to develop ongoing documentation on the creek.

I have always been a big fan of 'time lapse' photography. I've done time lapses of snowfalls, and of also of springtime "greening." I decided to expand the idea: to do a picture every day for a full year. I made it a New Year's Goal. While I grossly underestimated the amount of time and effort this project would take, I have been incredibly pleased with the results so far.

I have 3 sites I take "as close to the same" picture every day as possible. I publish Site 2's photo every day on Facebook and Twitter. I am pleased to release the first 3 months of my Site 1 series here for the Missourian. This is a shot of the quarry pool spillway, where the big turtle comes to eat mulberries every spring. In it you can see ice formation and snowmelt. Note there are 3 pictures for Feb. 21st, the day of the first big snowstorm. The 8 a.m. vs noon shot is incredible!

I hope you enjoy the Flat Branch Picture a Day series.

Scroll through the photos below to see changes over time for the first three months of 2013 at Flat Branch Creek.

If you can't see the slideshow embedded below, or if you want to see the photos labeled with the day they were taken, view the slideshow on Flickr.

This story is part of a section of the Missourian called From Readers, which is dedicated to your voices and your stories. We hope you'll consider sharing. Here's how. Supervising Editor Joy Mayer.

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Derrick Fogle April 3, 2013 | 11:27 a.m.

Thanks for publishing this! I saw my the first fish of the season, a lone 2" fingerling darting about in the pool below the low water bridge, on Sunday March 31st.

I also saw no less than 6 deer congregating at the Low Water Bridge last week, too:

There have been no discharges or detectable spills into the creek since the first of the year, and the rains and snowmelt have done a good job washing things clean. The Stream Clean Team has been through and picked up trash as well.

The creek is in good health so far this spring, coming to life on cue!

(Report Comment)
Derrick Fogle April 3, 2013 | 2:39 p.m.

April 3rd mid-day shot has just been uploaded. I think I am going to start uploading the daily photo for PADS1 to this Flickr account, like I have been uploading daily shots of my PADS2 site to FB and Twitter.

(Report Comment)
Joy Mayer April 3, 2013 | 9:10 p.m.

Thanks for keeping us updated, Derrick! If you add photos to the Flickr set, they'll appear here, so this story page will stay up to date as well.

— Joy Mayer, Columbia Missourian

(Report Comment)
Derrick Fogle April 3, 2013 | 9:51 p.m.

Yes, that's the idea. ;-)

(Report Comment)
Derrick Fogle April 8, 2013 | 8:54 p.m.

Big snapping turtle spotted at low water bridge 4/8/13:

I was making a dusk picture run tonight, when I heard a "splash" at the low water bridge. Going to investigate, I spotted a large snapping turtle trying to climb over the low water bridge. As I crept up to get a picture, it toppled over backwards again, then froze with it's snout out of the water when it saw me.

I tried to move around a tree to get a closer shot, of course it disappeared the moment I couldn't see it. I used my camera infrared and flash to find it in the pool, and took a few underwater "Snap" shots, he he he...

Even though it was moving up creek above the spillway dam, I would suspect it will only be a few days before it's spotted there. It can move pretty fast. Gonna be awhile before those mulberries are ready though!

(Report Comment)
Derrick Fogle May 16, 2013 | 10:23 a.m.

Big Snapping Turtle spotted in the quarry lake spillway pool this AM:

Creek health overall has been pretty typical; algae growth has really picked up over the last couple of weeks as it's warmed up. This morning I noticed some mild cloudiness that likely came from a construction site, but nothing thick enough to be traceable. Fish population seems good, I see lots of fingerlings, and I've seen a 5-inch largemouth trying to nest, and defend from several smaller 3-4 inch fish. Haven't seen much in the way of crawdads yet though.

I also see a couple more homeless guys out on the trail all the time since the city has been trying to clean up the north camp. They are not using last year's camp near the low water bridge, but I haven't tried to find any new camps.

(Report Comment)
Derrick Fogle December 31, 2013 | 9:16 p.m.

Newsflash: Picture-a-Day Project is complete! Videos here:

One more video to come.


(Report Comment)

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