The Ewell Reservation consists of old field, and young and mature white pine stands. The open field is leased to the Rowley Riding and Driving Club, which maintains the field. This upland is situated next to Upper Mill Pond, part of the Mill River system.
In another time, Algonquian women and their young children would have come here by canoe from settlements on the Parker River via the Mill River to harvest Northern wild rice and smartweed grain. They would bend the grasses over the gunnels for the children to paddle out the kernels, and then release the plants to continue growing.
As the rice and grain gradually filled a basket or cloth on the floor of the canoe, the women would have told the children to look out for otter. Seeing an otter was lucky. Perhaps they told the children the story of otter—a light-hearted trickster who always knew where to catch eels and was the best of all the animals at catching them, and how rabbit had made a fool of himself by trying to imitate otter.
Flora & Fauna
The Ewell Reservation is a prime location to enjoy the splendor and beauty of waterfowl during the spring migration when ducks are courting. The wild rice, smartweed and other wetland plants offer a tasty food source for these birds.
If you visit in spring in the twilight hours of dawn and dusk, there is a chance you may, as the Indigenous People did, see otters at the trail edges around the pond.
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.