Virginia Birding and Wildlife Trail
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- Site Access: Free, open daily
Site PSR05: Mossingford Road Marsh
Mossingford Road leads to a bridge over Roanoke Creek and a short gravel road leads north to its eastern bank. Due to years of busy beavers and seasonal flooding, the creek spreads out over dozens of acres, flooding large areas of standing vegetation and creating a fantastic wetland. Search the treetops for roosting great blue and green herons or the occasional great egret. During the winter, check for waterfowl such as gadwall, American widgeon and perhaps an occasional group of hooded mergansers. The shrubs around the wetland support numerous northern mockingbirds and northern cardinals, joined by flocks of American crows passing through from time to time. In winter, the same shrubs support dozens of sparrows, including song, swamp and white-throated. Raptors to be seen in the area include numerous red-tailed hawks, along with the occasional osprey, and in winter northern harriers patrol the wetlands waiting to pounce on their next snack. The moist soils on the banks of the river attract dozens of butterflies, with red-spotted purples and question marks crowding around standing water, and the occasional viceroy fluttering past. Dragonflies to look for include blue dashers and eastern pondhawks.
Leaving Mulberry Hill Plantation, continue north on Rt. 641 for 2.3 miles to Rt. 612. Turn right (east) on Rt. 612 for 0.6 miles to Rt. 637/Saxey Road. Go left (north) on Rt. 637 for 2.7 miles to Rt. 642/Mossingford Road. Turn left and head west 0.6 miles to the marsh.