This is part of the base of a tree. This tree happens to be close to our new campsite, but there are quite a few trees like this throughout the woods at Roundrock. This hole was formed when a low branch of the tree died and rotted away. It gives access to the hollow core of the trunk, and I suppose a lot of forest critters make use of this doorway to sanctuary.
What I find curious about these holes is the gnawing and scratching I commonly see around them. I imagine a drama with a small forest critter being pursued by a larger one. The little critter probably leapt into this hole (having known it was here) and found safety within the trunk. The larger critter dashed up and was surely disappointed, but with the frenzy of the chase still in its blood, it gnawed and scratched at the knot, perhaps thinking it could dig its way in.
There may be some sense to that. The forest floor is littered with fallen trees. Some are rotten enuf that they are barely holding themselves together. I’d guess that at least once a hungry forest critter has gnawed and scratched one of these rotten logs and gotten to the soft filling inside.
That’s the story I’m going with anyway.
- Snow goose population at wetland areas is at its peak.