Nature Park
 

The Museum offers a 45-acre Nature Park with both short and long trails open for exploration. There are guided and self-guided tours. In the Nature Park visitors are introduced to the Iroquois view of nature -- Our Mother the Earth, our Elder Brother the Sun, our Grandfathers the Thunderers, our Three Sisters (Corn, Beans, and Squash), the earth as Turtle Island, the nine clan animals, the four beings who are the winds, our Grandmother Moon, Morning Star, the Seven Dancers, and the medicines and herbs gifted by the Creator.

The Park consists of fields and woods, with a feeder stream winding its way down to Cobleskill Creek, which flows along the entire southeast corner of the park. Sometime in the last century, a huge stone dam was built across the stream, but one of those "once in a century" storms took out the center of the dam, leaving mute but dramatic testimony to the power of the surrounding watershed. Today the stream is classified as a trout stream by DEC, but trout have yet to be discovered. Other fish, frogs, crayfish, green heron, kingfisher, and a rare visiting beaver have been noted.

 

The park is a fine spot for birding. Deer and racoon are plentiful, as though the site has become an island of safety for them. The woods has a strong group of shagbark hickory trees, with many venerable and stately hemlocks. A few dignified maples are engaged in their silent struggle against "Maple Decline," and the Park's many ash trees are trying desperately to survive the spread of the Emerald Ash Borer.

 

In the Nature Park are two 19th century log homes moved from Six Nations Reserve, Ontario, and rebuilt by a Mohawk construction company. The homes were used as residences well into this century.

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