The Massachusetts Forest Trust is holding a series of Thursday morning bird walks in May and June at the Taylor Forest Tree Farm in Ashfield and Hawley to see what birds and other wildlife can be observed at the 30 acre habitat area which was clearcut in 2017.
Young forest habitat has become increasingly rare in Massachusetts and is important for many species of birds and wildlife which have become less common as suitable habitat shrinks.
For about 10 years following a clearcut, the regrowing woodland contains a wide variety of herbaceous plants and forbs such as raspberries, blackberries, and other plants not found in woodlands with a closed canopy. The wide variety of foods available means that it can serve as habitat for a wider variety of birds, mammals, reptiles and amphibians until the new trees grow enough to close the canopy and shade out the ground plants below.
We welcome birders and outdoor enthusiasts to take part in these bird walks and help document what species are observed (or heard) at the Taylor Forest. The walks will be held on Thursdays May 16th, May 30th , and June 13th from 7:30 to 9:30 am.
Participants should wear long pants and long sleeves and suitable boots for wet conditions. We encourage participants to treat their clothing against ticks and bring bug spray.
Because the regrowing forest has many stumps and abundant slash, a sturdy walking stick may be helpful. These walks will be cancelled in event of heavy rain.
Participants should meet at the Taylor Forest entrance by the hydrant on Hawley Road just east of Old Stage Road. Participants are encouraged to park along the north side of Hawley Road only to keep the road safe for traffic.
For more information, call Gregory Cox at (413) 475-2883 or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org .