Virginia Birding and Wildlife Trail
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Site MSL02: Brush Creek Buffalo Farm
Elevation: 2297 ft. The open fields and shrubby bushes along this creek bed provide habitat for a variety of woodland species. Birds to look for in this area include yellow-billed cuckoo, ruby-throated hummingbird, belted kingfisher, red-bellied and downy woodpeckers, eastern wood-pewee, eastern phoebe, eastern kingbird, blue-gray gnatcatcher, eastern bluebird, brown thrasher, cedar waxwing, white-eyed and red-eyed vireos, yellow-breasted chat, orchard oriole and American goldfinch. During migration a greater variety of warblers, vireos and tanagers can be found. The road that parallels the creek is a good spot to look for butterflies with spicebush swallowtail, red-spotted purple and cabbage white occurring frequently. A more careful inspection of the area along the creek could produce damselflies such as ebony jewelwing and powdered dancer. White-tailed deer can be found anywhere in the area although eastern chipmunk are perhaps easier to see. However, neither sticks around for long.
From Smart View Recreation Area, continue south on the Blue Ridge Parkway for 6.7 miles to Rt. 615. Turn right and follow Rt. 615 for 4.0 miles to its intersection with US 221. Turn left on US 221 and follow 0.3 miles to SR 8. Turn right, heading northwest from US 221 approximately 7 miles to Rt. 617 Carriage Rd/White Oak Grove turn right and right again on White Oak Grove. Follow to stop sign at White Oak Grove and Laurel Ridge Mill Rd. (approx 4.0 miles) turn right after 2.3 miles onto Rt. 677/Dobbins Hollow Rd which veers off to the right. Stay on Rt. 617/Brush Creek Rd for 0.5 miles to Brush Creek Farm on the left. Look for the white farmhouse with a green roof and a sign in front; check in here before walking the trail. The walking trail is on the back of the property 1.0 mile further down Brush Creek Rd.