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MacKay Wildlife Preserve


The MacKay Wildlife Preserve has no address. It is located on the west side of the southern end of Spring Street just outside the Village of Caledonia in the County of Livingston. The preserve is well marked and has an off-street parking area.


The 26 acres of land that is now the MacKay Wildlife Preserve was once the farm where Marianna MacKay-Wilkes was raised. In 1971 she and her family donated the land to the Village of Caledonia to be used as a wildlife preserve.


The property is basically a rectangle with the longest part going back from the road. There is a perimeter trail and several short interconnecting trails. All trails are on hard-packed dirt.


Property/Trail Map (pdf)


There are a variety of signs that add interest to the preserve. There are interpretative signs about plants and rock formations; there are signs at the numerous benches throughout the property, dedicated to people who have helped turn the preserve into an enjoyable public place; and there are historical signs. Please take the time to read these signs.


The entire region has an interesting geology with several types of rocks being visible. Some of the rocks contain fossils, others provide a growing place for mosses, and still others have been used by humans in a variety of ways. There are many signs that help you understand the geology of the site.


The property is now a mature woods with an understory of bushes and (mostly native) wildflowers. There are a number of large trees, including an impressive and rather uncommon bur oak (Quercus macrocarpa).


Chipmunks and squirrels are visible as are a variety of woodland species of birds. You should be able to find woodpeckers, thrushes, warblers, catbirds, vireos, blue jays, nuthatches, chickadees, and possibly turkeys. This is a woods with a lot of hiding places, so keep your eyes open.



The trails in the preserve are rather narrow and can be rocky. Cross-country skiing would be difficult. Snowshoeing, on the other hand, would be an ideal way to visit the preserve in the winter. You will need to supply your own equipment.


There is a gazebo and two picnic tables at the entrance to the preserve. There are no bathrooms.


Dogs are not permitted on the property.


Genesee Country Village & Museum

Oatka Park

Both the Hamlet of Mumford and the Village of Caledonia are worth a visit as well.


Created 24 August 2010








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