Mi-Mast Wildlife Tracker

The MI-MAST smartphone app allows you to submit your plant observations while in the field. Do your part to benefit wildlife conservation and help biologists better understand wildlife populations in Michigan.

About

What is MI-MAST?

MI-MAST is a program where YOU get to understand wildlife foods in areas you are interested in while playing an important role in the conservation of Michigan’s wildlife. Understanding the cycles of wild fruit and seeds that are produced by trees and shrubs, also called mast, is a critical component of understanding wildlife habitat and population performance. Mast crops are known to directly affect wildlife productivity and survival, hence knowing more about wildlife food sources can help you locate more wildlife. Additionally, biologists need mast information across the entire state of Michigan to fully understand how wildlife populations might be responding to masting.

Who Can Participate?

Anyone can participate in the program. We have provided instructional materials and field guides to help walk you through the process.

How Much Time is Required?

Recording the amount of mast on plants only takes a few minutes, particularly if you are using our iPhone or Android smartphone applications. You can choose to record mast production for 1 plant or 100, the more plants you monitor the better you will understand masting patterns on lands that interest you.

When Can I Start?

You can create an account now and get started. You can set-up your plant locations at anytime and record the amount of fruits or nuts that are visible.

What Sort of Plants Should I Track?

We have identified mast producing plants that are the most important to wildlife and that are found throughout Michigan. You can find the list of plants here. If we are missing a plant that you would like to see added to our database please contact the program coordinator at roloff@msu.edu.

Species Information Sheets

American beech USDA Symbol: FAGR
Family: Fagaceae Mast Type: Hard
Scientific Name: Fagus grandifolia Habit: Tree
Apple USDA Symbol: MAPU
Family: Rosaceae Mast Type: Soft
Scientific Name: Malus pumila Habit: Tree
Autumn olive USDA Symbol: ELUM
Family: Elaeagnaceae Mast Type: Soft
Scientific Name: Elaeagnus umbellata Habit: Shrub
Beaked hazelnut USDA Symbol: COCO6
Family: Betulaceae Mast Type: Hard
Scientific Name: Corylus cornuta Habit: Tree
Bitternut hickory USDA Symbol: CACO15
Family: Juglandaceae Mast Type: Hard
Scientific Name: Carya cordiformis Habit: Tree
Black cherry USDA Symbol: PRSE2
Family: Rosaceae Mast Type: Soft
Scientific Name: Prunus serotina Habit: Tree

Fact Sheet Printouts

Don’t have a smartphone? Print out these fact sheets to help you identify your plant in the field.

Hard Mast Fact Sheet PDF

Soft Mast Fact Sheet PDF

Hard and Soft Mast Fact Sheet PDF

NEWS

MUCC OTG- CRANE POND STATE GAME AREA 2017
APRIL 5, 2017 BY GARY ROLOFF

On Saturday, April 22nd at 9AM, MUCC and volunteers will be meeting at the Crane Pond State Game Area Field Office to improve wildlife habitat. They will be planting mast-producing trees and shrubs as well as building brush piles to provide cover for … [Read more...]

FILED UNDER: MUCC, NEWS
Habitat Project at Haymarsh Lake SGA Will Kickoff MUCC’s Annual Convention
JUNE 15, 2016 BY SYNDICATED NEWS

This weekend will be MUCC’s Annual Convention hosted at the Holiday Inn of Big Rapids, MI. There will be an OTG event at the nearby Haymarsh Lake State Game Area at 10am on Friday to kick-off the convention. Volunteers with MUCC’s Wildlife Habitat … [Read more...]

FILED UNDER: MUCC, NEWS
Habitat Project at Haymarsh Lake SGA Will Kickoff MUCC’s Annual Convention
JUNE 15, 2016 BY SYNDICATED NEWS

This weekend will be MUCC’s Annual Convention hosted at the Holiday Inn of Big Rapids, MI. There will be an OTG event at the nearby Haymarsh Lake State Game Area at 10am on Friday to kick-off the convention. Volunteers with MUCC’s Wildlife Habitat … [Read more...]

FILED UNDER: MUCC, NEWS
CWD Update – Core Zone Expanded
JUNE 14, 2016 BY SYNDICATED NEWS

Last week I attended one of the CWD meetings DNR held in Ionia. Both Chad Stewart and Chad Fedewa gave presentations on the disease, and what the Division has done to understand the spread of the disease at this time. Around 30 people attended the … [Read more...]

FILED UNDER: MUCC, NEWS
CWD Update – Core Zone Expanded
JUNE 14, 2016 BY SYNDICATED NEWS

Last week I attended one of the CWD meetings DNR held in Ionia. Both Chad Stewart and Chad Fedewa gave presentations on the disease, and what the Division has done to understand the spread of the disease at this time. Around 30 people attended the … [Read more...]

Contact Us

If you have any questions regarding the MIMAST project or if you’d like to report a problem, please contact us at: info@mimast.org

Help

Use this FAQ to help answer some of the basic questions you might have. If you do not find an answer in this FAQ then please use the Contact Us form to send us your question.

Do I need to have an account to participate?

Yes, you must have an account to participate. Click on Free Account at the top of the page to start today!

Where can I go to make mast observations?

Anywhere in Michigan! We recommend you report on plants that are found in familiar areas so you can easily find them next year.

When should I make observations?

You are able to create new locations at any time, and can record the amount of mast present once the fruits or nuts are visible.

How do I submit my data?

Click the Submit Data menu option to access the data portal and begin submitting your observations. You can also submit data using the smartphone applications available for the iPhone or Android devices.

Can other people see the data that I submit?

The information and data that you submit is kept private. Only you and system administrators are allowed to view your data submissions.

What is the difference between a location and an observation?

When creating a new location you will identify the plant and map its position. These locations (aka plants) will only be recorded once and will be saved to your account for you to make observations for in the future. You will make 1 observation a year at each of your locations. When making an observation you will describe the amount of mast on the plant as either None, Few, or Many.

Should I create only one location for a large berry patch?

If the berry patch is continuous and has the same amount of mast, please create only one location.

Can I submit data on trees that have already dropped their acorns?

The None, Few, and Many amount categories only pertain to nuts that have not yet fallen. We ask that you do not report on trees that have already lost the majority of their nuts. If only some of the nuts have fallen, please only record the amount still in the tree.

Can I submit data on species other than the ones listed?

We are most interested in the species provided in the list. If you believe you have a new species that would be beneficial to track, you can send us an email requesting an addition to the list.

Beech Bark Disease(Cryptococcus fagisuga + Neonectria spp.)

Why we care: Beech bark disease (BBD) is caused by both asap-feeding scale insect and a fungus.American beech trees are first infested with beech scale. Scale feeding allows infection by the Neonectriafungus. The fungus kills the wood, blocking the flow of sap. Affected trees decline in health and eventuallydie. Some infected trees break off in heavy winds before dying – a condition called "beech snap" (see photo).The scales are covered with white wool, turning infested portions of the tree white.What is at risk? There are 32 million American beech trees in Michigan. About 2.5 million beech have beenkilled by BBD to date. Much of this loss has been in the eastern Upper Peninsula. Newly infested beech forestsare reported in the Lower Peninsula every year.The threat: Tree mortality occurs three to six years after scales initially infest an area. The largest trees aremost susceptible. Scale-infested trees with apparently healthy crowns are a hazard due to beech snap.What is happening in Michigan? High timber-value trees are being salvaged. The DNR has stepped uphazard tree removals due to BBD and the emerald ash borer. About 3% of American beech is resistant to BBD.Resistant trees are being identified and used to produce resistant American beech for the future.What can you do? Don’t move beech firewood or logs from infested areas to uninfested areas. Controlling thenatural spread of BBD is not feasible because both the scale and fungus are moved by animals and the wind.Once scale infests trees in your area, watch for resistant trees. Report new finds.February 2014Beech trees weakened by BBD often “snap”Michigan DNR Forest Health Program photo archiveScale-infested beechMichigan DNR Forest Health Program photo archive