To the Editor:
The meadows near Dickinson Park along Barb’s Trail are in full late summer bloom right now, as flowering joe-pye weed, goldenrod, and ironweed grace the landscape. Thanks again to Parks and Recreation staff for delaying the mowing of these meadows until such time as any nesting birds would have fledged their young. Also, allowing the native plants to mature supports bird populations as well as beneficial insect populations including important pollinators such as butterflies, bees, and moths.
Unfortunately, meadows are a fast disappearing habitat in Connecticut as they have frequently been converted to lawns or allowed to revert to forested tracts. It is for this reason that the Newtown Conservation Commission is sponsoring a Meadows Initiative, aiming to preserve meadow habitats throughout town.
The High Meadow at Fairfield Hills is known for its expansive views and associated bird and insect populations. Also at Fairfield Hills, the West Meadow, along Wasserman Way, offers a wetland meadow which can be enjoyed by anyone driving through this busy part of town. A meadow on the Pole Bridge Open Space preserve is tucked away in a woodland setting, while a meadow on Pond Brook Open Space offers its own unique set of plant and wildlife components. Large meadows with hiking trails and views are found off Old Farm Road beyond the Reed Intermediate School.
This fall it is hoped that residents may become familiar with some of these meadow habitats. Each one may be a little different from the others, but each one offers a unique opportunity to connect with the natural world on a personal level.
Chairman, Newtown Conservation Commission
12 Whippoorwill Hill Road, Newtown September 16, 2013