Aug 18, 2021

Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary

Earlier this year, Mrs Dex and I were trying to think up something fun to do that wouldn't require being around a lot of people. Not that we're anti-social but you know...Covid. She came up with the idea of visiting wildlife sanctuaries and that's become an occasional thing to do when the weather is nice.

Recently we went to Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary and I figured I'd share some pics and maybe inspire others to check out their local wildlife places. It's one of those things people either don't know about or forget about, like libraries.

This particular place has 12 miles of trails. I would guess we might have barely covered 1/6 of that. There were plenty of critters to be seen and really, that's the main reason I want to explore these areas. It's funny when you think about it. These sanctuaries aren't far from your home but you'll never see some of these animals in your neighborhood.

As a for instance, of course we have plenty of grey squirrels around but rarely, if ever do you see a red squirrel. We saw quite a few here!

This guy (gal?) was particularly chatty. Before we saw it, we thought we were hearing some kind of bird. You can listen to their chatter here

Further along our walk, we came across this squirrel having a little feast where someone had left some seeds on a rock.

Another squirrel tried to get in on the food but got chased away. I just happened to catch it at the right moment.

The area near the visitor center has this interesting wood pile with tree branches in it.

Parts of the trail consist of foot bridges over water. Have you ever seen so many lily pads?

This red-winged blackbird is hanging out in a cattail marsh on the other side. The plant has many uses even though it's considered an invasive weed. Fun fact I just found out: it's also called corn dog grass which makes total sense.

I don't know what it is about this area but it just brought me back to being a kid. Maybe it's because I love exploring woods and this seems like a little hideaway in the forest.

There were some turtles in the water by the bridge but would not hold still for a good photo! When they would come up they'd almost immediately submerge again.

This here is a cormorant which I don't think I've ever seen before. In Germanic languages up until the Middle Ages, they were referred to as sea ravens. I followed a path towards the left to try and get a closer shot but there were too many plants in the way. I did get about 15' away and it just stayed there the whole time.

 Probably the coolest area is this rock grotto that was built in 1905. There's a few twisty passages built all from rocks. 

If you explore the passages, there are some sections that are completely enclosed overhead. Maybe not the best place if you're claustrophobic.

Along one of the paths was this knocked over tree. It's pretty amazing how much ground was pulled up when the tree fell.

That's going to wrap up our little nature excursion for now. There's even more photos over on Flickr if you want to check them out. Enjoy!


  1. So awesome. Makes me want to get outdoors a bit this week.

    1. I'm not much of an outdoorsy person but searching for animals and cool things to photograph makes it a lot of fun.