Virginia Birding and Wildlife Trail
Dan River Loop
On the eastern edge of Halifax County the Dan, Banister and Staunton Rivers converge to form John H. Kerr Reservoir (Buggs Island Lake). These great rivers have supported the Occoneechee Indians since long before the first Europeans ever set eyes on Virginia (or heard of tobacco, for that matter). For generations the Occoneechee hunted, trapped and fished this area and thrived upon its abundant wildlife. The Occoneechee have since moved on and the rivers have slowed down, yet the wildlife persists in great abundance providing a fantastic opportunity for exploration and observation. Check this collection of sites along the Dan River and the upper reservoir for flocks of ring-billed gulls joined occasionally by other gulls. Scan the forest edge carefully for a fox sparrow or hermit thrush quietly sitting still. As the weather turns colder, explore the snow-covered marshy backwaters for rusty blackbirds or lie on your back and watch red-tailed hawks sail lazily overhead.
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