Powhatan Wildlife Management Area
This is gently rolling upland, well drained by a number of small streams that make their way to Sallee Creek, which flows northward across the entire management area on its way to the James River. Due to the area’s past use for farming, and some of the current wildlife management practices of burning and discing, much of the area is open fields. These openings, along with mature and newly emerging forests, assure a diversity of wildlife cover types. The area’s acreage is contiguous, although divided by Route 60 and has one privately owned interior property. Water on the area includes four “farm” ponds. Powhatan is really like visiting two entirely different areas. The area south of US 60 is forests and fields with a large beaver impoundment at its center. Here you are as likely to see merlin, Acadian flycatcher, and wood duck as you are bald eagles. During migration, bobolinks have been seen in large flocks in the open fields. North of US 60 is the former Powhatan Lakes. These two lakes formerly hosted a wide variety of waterfowl, before the dams gave way in the summer of 2004. Witness how nature reclaims these formerly flooded lake beds. In addition, at the far western end of the former lower lake, a medium-size heron rookery exists. With binoculars in hand in late winter and early spring, you can watch the daily comings and goings of great-blue heron parents fishing the lakes to feed their hungry young.