Lilly Pond, located in Goshen, Massachusetts, contains a high-quality Level Bog, recognized by NHESP as a priority natural community for protection. Lilly Pond is located less than half a mile east of nearly 2700 acres of state-owned protected open space: DFW's Westfield River Access Area and the Cummington Wildlife Management Area, DCR's Chesterfield State Forest, and the state-owned Westfield River Wilderness Area.
The Lilly Pond bog is undisturbed and surrounded by extensive intact hemlock-red maple-yellow birch-red oak woods. The bog mat at Lilly Pond is approximately 20 acres and has a floating dwarf shrub mat dominated by Leatherleaf with scattered Bog Rosemary and Bog Laurel. Herbaceous species include Pitcher Plant, Round-leaved Sundew, Virginia Cottongrass, and Rose Pogonia. A 20 to 30-meter-wide moat separates the mat from the upland woods. The southern portion of the bog grades into a very good example of a spruce-fir forest, which is then abutted to the east by a Red Maple shrub swamp. On occasion, Great Blue Herons nest in the dead snags emerging from the bog.
Identified as a priority for land protection in 2001, DFW has since protected over 300 acres at this site. In 2004, the 20-acre bog itself was donated to DFW by the previous owner, Five Colleges, Inc. Five Colleges, Inc., is the consortium of colleges and universities in the Connecticut River valley of Massachusetts, including the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, Amherst College, Hampshire College, Mt. Holyoke College, and Smith College. These colleges had owned the bog as a site for ecological research.
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