|COVID-19 & the VBWTBefore heading out to visit a site on the Virginia Bird & Wildlife Trail, be sure to check if that site has any COVID-19 policies or closures in place. This information is typically posted on a site's own website.|
With its series of trails, Loriella Park is the perfect place for a walk in the woods. As if the song, “Over the river and through the woods” was written for this park, follow the trails as they lead you down along creek beds, past towering sycamores and through patches of dense deciduous forest. Wildlife can be encountered anywhere along the trail, with gray squirrels scampering through the leaf litter. The very fortunate and diligent observer may even catch a glimpse of the resident southern flying squirrel as it glides between trees at dusk, ready for a night of exploration. Listen for the subtle tapping of red-bellied and downy woodpeckers as they search for bugs beneath the bark. In the winter these are joined by yellow-bellied sapsuckers and their more structured method of feeding. Watch as they leave behind rows of dozens of holes all leaking sap on which they and other animals will return later to feed.
In migration warblers and vireos drop in to forage with the numerous Carolina chickadees and tufted titmice. These flocks can be joined by white-breasted nuthatches at anytime of year and red-breasted nuthatches in the winter. The open fields at the entrance to the park are the cruising grounds of common green darner and black saddlebag dragonflies. Further into the forest, check the creek beds for ebony jewelwings and eastern pondhawks. Butterflies can also be found in abundance, with common buckeyes, red-spotted purples and pearl crescents being especially numerous.
From Duff McDuff Green Memorial Park, return to SR 3 and go west 2.0 miles to SR 2. Go south on SR 2/Dixon Street for 1.0 mile to Rt. 638/Lansdowne Road. Go right (west) on Rt. 638 for 2.3 miles to Rt. 636/Mine Road. Turn right (west) on Rt. 636 for 1.8 miles to SR 208/Courthouse Road. Turn left (west) for 1.0 miles to Rt. 639/Leavells Road. Turn right (north) on Rt. 639 and follow it 1.1 mile to Loriella Park on the left.