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An expansive meadow active with many grassland birds welcomes you to a forest of mixed woods bordered by wetlands, home to beaver and waterfowl. Beyond the stone wall, trails through a wooded upland lead to a boardwalk and wetlands that abut the Martin Burns Wildlife Management Area.
During the late 18th and early 19th centuries, approximately 80 percent of Massachusetts’ forests were cleared for agriculture. The hayfields and pastures provided sanctuary to birds, insects and small animals until the farms were abandoned, and land began to revert back to forest. To prevent the loss of this meadow to successional forest, Greenbelt actively manages the property for grassland birds, mowing the field after the nesting season.
A meandering stream through wetlands dominated by sedges and rushes separates the grasslands from a mixed hardwood/conifer forest. Wildflowers abound from late May through June.
The superb grassland habitat attracts invertebrates, including dragonflies, butterflies, and damselflies. Bobolinks and eastern meadowlarks are known to nest successfully in June and July, and eastern wild turkeys are common all year. The large beaver-flooded wetland attracts wood ducks and other waterfowl.
Latitude 42.777307, Longitude -70.887324
From Route 95/Exit 56/Scotland Road East
Go east on Scotland Road. In 2.0 miles, turn right onto Highfield Road. In 0.6 miles, turn right onto Middle Road. Trailhead and parking are 0.6 miles ahead on the right.
From intersection of Route 1 and 133 in Rowley
Go north on Route 1. In 5.0 miles, turn left onto Boston Road at blinking yellow light. In 0.1 miles, turn right onto Middle Road. Trailhead and parking are 0.2 miles ahead on the left.
Park along side of road.
82 Eastern Avenue, Essex,
Greenbelt is grateful to several professional and staff photographers whose work is featured prominently within our website.
Thank you Jerry Monkman / ecophotography.com, Lynne Holton, Kindra Clineff, Adrian Scholes and John Raleigh.