Overview

The Butternut Island Nature Preserve is 2.44 hectares (6 acres) and is located on the Nashwaak Stream in Nashwaak Bridge. This island consists almost entirely of butternut overstory and there are no residential developments or trails within the property. The Nature Trust has accepted the donation of this property because it is a valuable contribution to the ecological diversity in the Province. The island consists of rich floodplain habitat with a small wetland.

History

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The property lies within traditional Wolastoqey/ Maliseet territory. The area has been used by indigenous peoples for hunting and fishing for thousands of years. The earliest non-aboriginal inhabitants of the lower Nashwaak River were French grant-holders in the 1600’s. The upper Nashwaak was unsettled until the construction of Royal Road in 1832. The early 1800’s had settlement in communities including Woodlands, Birdton, and Cardigan.

Ecology

The forest cover is dominated by butternut (Juglans cinerea). Other tree species on property include silver maple (Acer saccharinum), and sugar maple (Acer saccharum).

White-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) and raccoon (Procyon lotor) have been seen on the nature preserve. Bird species seen on the preserve include the norther flicker (Colaptes auratus), blue-winged teal (Anas discors), spotted sandpiper (Actitis macularius), osprey (Pandion haliaetus), great blue heron (Ardea Herodias), song sparrow (Melospiza melodia), Veery (Catharus fuscescens), American crow (Corvus brachyrhynchos) and a tree swallow (Tachycineta bicolor).