Sunday, September 16, 2007

A Walk at Maltby Nature Preserve

Can anyone identify this butterfly?*

My sweetie Dave and I decided to take part of this lovely September morning to explore Maltby Nature Preserve, located northeast of Northfield, near Randolph. Shortly after I started this blog I got a call from Katherine McBride, who works there, inviting me to check out this local nature area, home to the Science Center for P-12 education. It's not prominently signposted, and is easiest to find by heading west on Sciota Trail (302nd St.) from Hwy 56, north of Hwy 19. We had the place to ourselves and strolled down well-maintained and mostly well-signposted mulched trails through woodland, around a pond, and over to a lookout point over the Cannon River. We saw a couple of woodpeckers and a goldfinch, but it was a slow day for birdwatching. The trails are laid out nicely so that people -- perhaps those with young children -- who just want a 10-minute walk can have it and those who want to stroll for 45 minutes can do that. View a slideshow below, or click to enlarge the album.

*Addendum: After some exploration of butterfly sites, I'd venture a guess that this butterfly is an Eastern Comma.

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