Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Sterling Nature Center

Today's Photo - Dawn at the Heron Rookery - Sterling Nature Center, Sterling, NY

Another non - trailer or travel day.  Well, maybe a little travel - the Sterling Nature Center is about 5 miles form home. If you are traveling the Seaway Trail, it is well worth a stop.

The Nature Center has an interesting history.  The farm land was originally purchased to build a nuclear power plant.  There were a number of proposals to use the land for things such as a toxic waste dump, etc, but eventually the center was formed.

Sterling Nature Center offers a variety of  trails that include the lakeshore of Lake Ontario, bluffs, woodlands, and, my favorite, the Heron Rookery.  The rookery was formed when beavers created a pond that flooded an ash forest.  While most of the trees died, they left a perfect nest building site.  At one time there were over 60 nesting pairs of herons on the pond.  Although winters have torn down many of the trees, the site is still a wonderful place to view herons, osprey & eagles in their natural habitat.  Some photos from the last couple of years:

Great Blue Heron


Mom & Pop


Mom & the Kids

The Pond

If you are interested in visiting to see the herons, late spring or early summer is best.  The birds fledge (leave the nest) by mid summer.  

On the other hand, the fall can be beautiful:
Fall at Sterling Nature Center

Sterling Nature Center is located in Sterling, NY

View Sterling Nature Center in a larger map

I have more photos and information on a few of my web pages: Sterling Nature Center and Sterling Nature Center 2006, & Sterling Nature Center 2010.

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