Focal Places in Burlington

Englesby Brook : Natural History & Ecology

Crescent Woods

Pileated Woodpecker
Pileated Woodpecker
Crescent Woods is a public natural area that lies between Shelburne Road to the west and Crescent Road to the east. Each member of a diverse collection of trees and animals within the woods tells its own story. The woods are composed of a smattering of tree species that are found throughout Burlington, including familiar maples (red, sugar, boxelder, and Norway), trees often found in more enriched soils (like American Basswood), and nut-producing oaks and hickories. You might hear auditory signs of barred owls and pileated woodpeckers in the woods, as well as find prints of various small mammal species along the stream banks. If you look closely on the enormous sugar maples in Crescent Woods, you may see tap scars from when these trees were tapped for maple syrup. In the brook itself you can discover green frogs and dace fish, and if you look a bit more carefully, you will likely notice aquatic invertebrates. This unique area is explored by many Englesby Brook Watershed residents and has a substantial network of paths.

Englesby Magnetism

Ferric oxide in stream
Ferric oxide in stream
Iron bacteria is a group of about 18 different types of aerobic bacteria that derive their energy from feeding on dissolved ferrous iron. In the process, they excrete insoluble ferric oxide - a reddish-orange, gelatinous slime that appears at the surface of groundwater seeps, in streams, and in domestic water wells and plumbing. Englesby Brook features some notable colonies of these iron bacteria, and one neighbor of the brook shared stories of using magnets to collect the iron deposits generated by these naturally-occurring micro-residents of the Englesby.