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Crane Swamp Conservation Area

Birding in Massachusetts

Crane Swamp Conservation Area
Northborough, Massachusetts 01532
Crane Swamp Conservation Area brochure and map

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Worcester County

Crane Swamp Conservation Area
Coordinates: 42.3111801, -71.5860987
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About Crane Swamp Conservation Area
The Crane Swamp Conservation Area includes 2,225 acres of open space straddling the borders of Northborough, Westborough, Southborough, and Marlborough. The centerpiece is a high-quality 400-acre red maple swamp. The swamp is surrounded by a complex of open fields, wet meadows, ponds, pine plantations, and oak-pine forests, with Cedar Hill to the west and Walnut Hill to the northeast. Such a diverse, high-quality and expansive conservation area is a unique treasure in Metrowest Boston.

The properties are owned by a variety of Massachusetts state agencies as well as the Sudbury Valley Trustees (SVT). SVT protected 101 acres of Sawink Farm Reservation at the border of Northborough and Westborough in 1992 and the 88-acre drumlin of Cedar Hill in Northborough in 1993. The Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) owns Crane Swamp, Little Crane Swamp, and much of Walnut Hill, just north of Sawink Farm Reservation. Westborough State Hospital land extends from Lyman Street to Chauncy Pond, and the Massachusetts Division of Fish & Game owns land which runs west to the Assabet River. Furthermore, the protected watershed helps to preserve the public water supply for 2.5 million people.

This mosaic of different habitats provides for a rich array of plants and animals, including state-listed species, interior-sensitive forest birds, and species that need to range some distance throughout the year for survival. Wildlife species known to inhabit the conservation area include bobcat, coyote, Red fox, Eastern Cottontail rabbits, Snowshoe hare, White-tailed deer, Barred Owl, Ruffed Grouse, American Woodcock, Spotted turtles, and Monarch butterflies.
From Crane Swamp Conservation Area brochure and map