The Belding Wildlife Management Area is a fascinating layout of land, and they have many dynamic practices to manage habitats, including a stand of new Chestnut trees. When we visited, we met a U-Conn biology professor who was conducting a biodiversity study. She gave us excellent tips for trails at this time of year. Interestingly, the area is designed more for wildlife management, and the entryways [2-3 parking spots in some areas] on the perimeter are strategically set up for limited public access. I wonder if this design mitigated local neighborhood concerns as the property sprawls throughout private properties. Such a design may be an interest to our eastern campus, as it does not have many access points. The highlight of our visit was the graceful leap of a maturing doe into the native wildflower fields; as the flowers were on average five feet tall, we only saw the head of the deer when it pranced on subsequent leaps. This beautiful area and active management team demands more visiting.
Click here to get an idea of some of their dynamic projects: http://www.depdata.ct.gov/wildlife/slideshows/beldinghabitat/beldinghabitat.asp