Striar Conservancy - Halifax, MA
Steven and Brian Striar and Soozen Striar Tribuna - 153 acres, 1999
Steven and Brian Striar and Soozen Striar Tribuna - 5.01 acres, 2000
Funded by Sheehan Family Foundation and L. Knife & Son, Inc. - 6.5 acres, 2001
Acquisition of this preserve evolved from Wildlands Trust’s participation in the Taunton River Stewardship Program (TRSP). In 1998, with support from the National Park Service, the lower Winnetuxet was identified, as one of four top priorities for conservation along the Upper Taunton and its several headwater tributaries. Wildlands and the Town of Halifax joined forces to establish a multi-property conservation area encompassing nearly 250 acres along the Winnetuxet. In addition to this preserve, there is the Randall-Hilliard Preserve across the river, which the Town of Halifax purchased with support from the Sheehan Family Foundation, the Division of Conservation Services, and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation.
The Striar Conservancy along the lower Winnetuxet River includes rich wildlife habitats, meandering trails, and a feeling of having left the 21st century behind. The Winnetuxet River is in the Taunton River basin, the second largest river basin in the state. The river and the preserve’s large area of undeveloped land provide ideal habitat for as many as 90 species of birds, making this a paradise for birders. Enjoy views of the Winnetuxet and its flood plain as you watch for wood duck, woodcock, and ruffed grouse. The upland sandpiper and barn owl, state-protected species, occur close to the preserve. Walk the ancient ways and recent trails through the mature woodlands and across spring-fed streams. A trail-side display interprets many of the property’s natural features.
The diversity of the area’s river habitats, including marshes and seepage swamps, is exceptional. This preserve supports state-listed rare species, including the bridle shiner, Coopers hawk, and Mystic Valley amphipod. Deer, fox, and the locally uncommon river otter all thrive in the area, and the marshes and meanders of this segment of the river support one of the best warm water fisheries in Southeastern Massachusetts. The beautiful, old man-made pond near the trail’s end provides a worthy goal for a long ramble.