While not officially a sanctuary, we like to think of The Nature Trail as a safe haven for our precious wildlife.
Directly in the heart of the most prime property in the Village of East Hampton is the woodsy 24-acre Nature Trail, or the “Duck Pond” as it is affectionately known. The LVIS is proud to support this revered spot with a 12-person committee that puts the care and feeding of all the waterfowl and birds at its forefront. It is in the most frigid months of winter, as well as days of deluge or snow, that our now nearly domesticated ducks need us the most. We encourage nutritional feeding (poultry feed, cracked corn) and try to dissuade tossing of commercial bread products, especially bagels, into the water. The Duck pond lies in an area of Hook Pond, locally known as the ‘dreen’, that never fully freezes over and thus, we have a year-round, ever-growing population of waterfowl.
Although the Nature Trail has a quite wild and effortless look, the LVIS – in conjunction with the Garden Club of East Hampton – provides for the maintenance of the trails, while East Hampton Village oversees general preservation and protection.
A little history…
The Nature Trail was once a beautiful private Japanese garden. It was opened to the public in the 1940’s and the first eight acres were given to the Village in 1951 by Mrs. Mary Woodhouse. Our resident waterfowl were introduced at this time. The adjacent 16 acres were eventually donated to the Village by generous neighbors surrounding Mrs. Woodhouse’s garden. Today the total 23.92 acres are home to many paths and benches, 25 charming wooden bridges and a much-beloved shrine to St. Francis.