Stewart B. McKinney National Wildlife Refuge is the only sanctuary of its kind in the state of Connecticut. Parceled out into ten units along the Atlantic Flyway birds can rest, feed, and nest along the coastline – most notably the endangered roseate tern.
Salt Meadow Unit, 733 Old Clinton Rd, Westbrook, CT 06498
A 2.5 mile loop takes off in grassland filled with song birds and bunnies.
It then descends into forest the forest on a meticulously maintained trail.
There are multiple opportunities to branch off and admire the view of the marsh habitat.
At the muddy edge be sure to look for fiddler crabs, and spy waterfowl.
This is a known habitat for the woodcock, which I didn’t see – but hopefully will encounter in the future. Mid March to early April is courtship and breeding season – it might be easier to spot the well-camouflaged birds then. The males flies in circles over two hundred feet and zigzags while singing, to the ground. Impressive.
Great Meadows Unit, Long Beach Blvd, Stratford, CT
No trails to hike here, but quietly enter the bird blind and you may be in for a treat.
Spring and fall are migration season for birds, and the largest wetland in the state becomes packed with those stopping over. A group of egrets settled around an island.
Many heron were happy to stick close to the edge of the pond.
At the end of the road try and ignore the Fed Ex building and take in the view.
Lucky employees, this would be a great spot to spend your lunch break.