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Virginia Birding and Wildlife Trail

Site Information

  • Site Contact: Dan Mahon; (434) 296-5844, dmahon@albemarle.org
  • Site Access: Free, open daily sunrise to sunset
  • Visit Website

Facilities

Parking Picnic Restrooms

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Site PJR05: Totier Creek Park

Description

Mixed deciduous forests, peppered with informal trails, surround the manmade lake that serves as the center of Totier Creek Park. Starting at the boat ramp, scan the lake for winter waterfowl. Pied-billed grebes and diving ducks are likely to be in the deeper open waters, while wood ducks and other dabblers are likely to be in the small bays further away from the dam. A peek at a great blue heron is possible virtually anywhere along the shore and even on the creek further downstream. Green herons can be found in the same areas during the summer months, but tend to move on by mid-September. The lake also hosts numerous eastern painted turtles and some mighty common snapping turtles which are easiest to see in the spring when the females are laying eggs and moving around out of the water. The woods around the lake support the gang of regular eastern woodland species with blue jays and northern cardinals easily heard, if not always seen. Red-bellied and downy woodpeckers can turn up out in the open, in the trees near the boat ramp, or at the end of the dam. Check for gray squirrels, as you walk deeper into the woods to check for red-shouldered hawks. This buteo can be heard, and occasionally seen, soaring out over the lake, joining the turkey and black vultures and the occasional osprey overhead.

Directions

From the Howardsville Boat Landing, return to Rt. 626/Howardsville Road and turn right. Follow Rt. 626 for 5.8 miles to Rt. 627. Turn right on Rt. 627 and proceed 1.3 miles to Rt. 726 and turn left. Continue on Rt. 726 for 2.0 miles to Rt. 845/Totier Park Road. Turn right and go southwest for 0.5 miles to the park.

Loop Map