Pomfret

Aicher/Holzer Preserve



January 21, 2020: The Wyndham Land Trust is having Hull Forestry log most of the White Ash trees from our Aicher preserve in Pomfret.  The logging is expected to start in  January 2020 and finish prior to the spring nesting season.  We are getting ahead of the anticipated arrival of the Emerald Ash Borer.  This is an introduced invasive insect that is killing all the ash trees from the Mid-west and has arrived in eastern Ct.  Once infected the trees die in a few years.  Since this preserve has such a high number of ash trees and we have a hiking trail through the preserve, for safety reasons and not wasting a good natural resource we decided to have the trees harvested.  We consulted with a couple of foresters and they approved of this logging job.

From the high point of the Aicher Preserve, elevation 505 feet, one has striking views of the surrounding countryside. Below are a splendid hayfield, cornfields, and woodlands, all part of the preserve. A small lake and an alder shaded stream form the headwaters of Bark Meadow Brook. Bobolinks return from their winter home in Argentina to nest on the preserve and rear their young in the hayfield, which is not mowed until later in the season. Migrant waterfowl rest and feed on the lake and Great Crested Flycatchers call in the woodlands. American Kestrels, Tree Swallows, and Eastern Bluebirds also nest on the preserve, and Woodcock can be seen doing their courting display in the spring.

To enter the preserve, you should park on Freedley Road and enter through the farm gate, which is usually open. A cornfield is to your left, and the lake will appear to your right as you proceed. You can turn right into a network of woods roads or continue straight ahead and over the dam. Follow the tree line to either the right or the left.

The 20.5-acre Holzer parcel occupies the eastern half of a swamp lying on the westerly side of Harrisville Road opposite the Aicher Preserve. The Holzer Preserve is traversed by a small brook, and a beaver dam at the northen end is currenltly out. Entry to the Preserve is from Harrisville Road. Park with caution and take note of the frequent traffic.

Tree swallows, Swamp sparrows, and Red-winged Blackbirds are known to nest here. Yellow-throated Vireo, Rose-Breasted Grosbeak, and Wood Thrush have been reported here and probably nest.