This blog is for Bolton residents and Town Forest users to share their images, thoughts, and stories of Preston Pond and the Bolton Town Forest. My wife Bonnie and I live near the SW shore and are out nearly every day. We will be contributing from our daily walks and wanderings. We will also be posting thoughts on issues within the forest and welcome other Bolton residents and Town Forest users to join in those discussions.
October on Preston Pond
Brief History of Preston Pond
Born from glaciers about 13,500 years ago, the original pond was only what is now the wider north end. Probably about 10,000 years ago, as the modern forest started to take root, beavers colonized the pond and expanded it (old dams are under the water surface).
With the arrival of Europeans in New York and coastal New England, a vigorous fur trade grew in the 17th Century. Beavers are particularly vulnerable to trapping since they are easy to find and they were wiped out by the 18th Century. With no beavers to maintain the dams, Preston Pond drained and appears on 18th and 19th Century maps as only the smaller original glacial north end.
Reintroduction in the 1920's and 1930's led to beavers recolonizing Preston Pond. By chance, they arrived the same year my grandfather bought the property in 1946. Ever since then, beavers have lived unmolested (by humans) on Preston Pond - until February 2016. They have never caused flooding problems or over-eaten the surrounding forest stand to the point that they abandoned the pond. Their population has doubtlessly had its ups and downs, but they have managed their affairs here for the last 70 years as beavers did for millions of years: on their own, despite some of their top predators having been exterminated by humans.
Tuesday, April 26, 2016
Aside from Algonquin Park in Ontario, Canada, this was the first otter I had seen in Vermont. 3 of them hung around for days as the ice was melting, giving them a place to sample their catches of the day. Bonnie
Here you can see the classic carnivore teeth..."all the better to eat you with my dear".