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Posts Tagged ‘cave ecosystem’

Milo Cave, originally uploaded by Mic2006.

JC and I recently visited this fascinating cave that formed as a result of calcite being dissolved from a fissure. There were little in the way of crystals – nothing like the Aladin’s paradise that is Julia Cave, but still it had a beauty of its own.

See video on Milo Cave here.

The most intriguing part of Milo Cave is the bedding plane crawl that leads from its lower resurgence. The crawl is water washed gravel and you are drawn inwards by a cold breeze that blows from somewhere in the blackness. The roof soon came down so low that crawling for me became very uncomfortable and I resolved to return with a shovel as the only thing that was stopping me was this gravel bar and beyond that a large sprouting of ghostly white fungus.

As I backed outwards, steering as far as possible from some truly horrifying monster sized Ontario cave spiders, I chanced to see a pale, translucent shelled crayfish skittering off for cover. Troglobyte adaptation (spelling?) does not happen within a few generations and to my memory there is little in the literature of Ontario cave and karst studies that mentions albino creatures (Ongley talks of one case near in Stone House Cave).

The breeze and the presence of albino creatures is indicative of deeper tunnels further in. Looking on the surface I see that the direction of the tunnel is intercepted by one possible sink point, but more hopefully it might be leading on beneath a massive hill of solid granite – that being the case, clearing a crawl-way through the gravel would open some really interesting exploration. I wonder if there is a sink point somewhere in the forest beyond the granite hill.

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Death brings life underground, originally uploaded by Mic2006.

It would seem that one night in the middle of one of those incredible storms that blow off the lake, one hapless creature stumbled over this narrow crevice in the grass and slid down to become wedged between the back and the front of it’s skull; it was as good as dead the instant that it disappeared beneath the surface. There was no returning from the crack and as it’s head became wedged the creature would have hung for days before it died of suffocation, hypothermia or thirst.

Now moss is starting to grow on the skull and the remainder of it’s bones are likely scattered beneath it. Next time I visit the area I am bringing a hook to try and retrieve the skull. This is by no means a rare sight in caves and cavities beneath the rock of Ontario,, especially in systems with precipitous entrances, like shelburne, G-Lake and a new cave that we’ve just found this past weekend.

to see the video on this macabre find click here … ‘video – Death brings Life Underground’

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