Chapin Meadow is a scenic stop located on Wales Road, just west of the Monson & Wales town line. It overlooks an eclectic mix of habitats: a shrubby riparian corridor along Vineca Brook, vernal pools, stands of pitch pine, white pine and mixed deciduous uplands. The most significant feature is the extensive meadow, a former hayfield now being managed to encourage native grasses and wildflowers.
The property was acquired by Norcross in 1996 and is an ecologically important addition to the diversity of wildlife, both rare and common, present at the Sanctuary. The meadow is large enough in size to support nesting grassland birds such as bobolink and eastern meadowlark. From the overlook it is not uncommon to see butterflies foraging for nectar, bluebirds tending their fledglings, or a fox stalking an unsuspecting mouse. At dusk, you may hear the call of the barred owl echoing along the stream corridor, or in spring, the peenting of woodcock.
Enjoy the view at Chapin Meadow and share your sightings with us. Please note there are no hiking trails at this stop.