This grassy path around the 28 acre parcel that is a natural habitat for the American Woodcock and Ring-Neck Pheasant. This section of Gabis Arboretum was recently restored and reseeded with prairie grasses and plants these birds require. American Woodcocks are a threatened species because they need the brushy, low growth of young forests; this newly reforested area offers the shelter that they and other ground nesters need.
After you reach the trailhead from Pheasant Trail, take a moment to rest on the bench near a gentle stream. As you continue south, listen for the breeze rustling the grasses and look for lavender gayfeather, bee balm, and goldenrod. You’ll see the small barn and grains silo of local farm that adjoins the property, before turning back west. Enjoy the contrast of the deep mature forest on one side of the trail with the varied plants of the prairie on your other. If you need a breather, you’ll find another bench at the junction of Pheasant Trail and Woodcock Trail.
To return to the Depot, follow Pheasant Trail back to Bluebird Trail.