The following is a press release from The Lyme Land Trust.
Beavers were busy reshaping the landscape to suit their needs for millions of years before humans arrived on what we now call the North American continent.
On Saturday, Oct. 6, the Lyme Land Trust will sponsor an “Open Air Seminar & Beaver Walk” to show hikers how these instinctive hydraulic engineers make themselves at home – and enrich the environment in the process of creating dams and ponds.
The guided walk will visit three sites of beaver activity in Lyme to show the ecological cycle of beaver activity that changes the landscape, invigorates biological diversity, and triggers recurring cycles of animal and plant habitat development.
The first site to be visited is the soggy remains of a former beaver pond created by a dam that was breached by Hurricane Irene flood waters a year ago and has since been abandoned by the beavers that built it.
The second is an active beaver site with several dams, two ponds, and a couple of lodges (houses). The third is a “beaver meadow,” the rich mixture of grasslands and wetlands that eventually evolves several years after beavers have left a pond and moved on to a new location.
Ann Kilpatrick, district wildlife biologist with the state Department of Energy & Environmental Protection, will be the guide and seminar leader. She will explain how the beavers create habitat for many other species of both plants and animals in the course of building their own watery homes.
This moderately rugged two-mile walk will be primarily along forest trails and will take between two and three hours. Sturdy, waterproof shoes are recommended. It is free and open to the public. Children are welcome. Please do not bring pets.
The walk will start at 10 a.m. from Clucas Field on Brush Hill Road, about a quarter mile west of Tantumorantum Road.
Directions: Rt. 156 to Mt. Archer Road. West on Mt. Archer for about 2 miles to its intersection with Tantumorantum Rd. Go straight through this intersection onto Brush Hill Rd. Clucas Field is about 1000 ft. on the left.
For more information, check the Land Trust’s website at www.lymelandtrust.org