McLane Audubon Center
The McLane Center is Audubon's longest established center. In addition to being a program center, the building is also home to the statewide operations of Audubon.
It offers year-round environmental education programs for people of all ages through school and youth group programs, vacation camps during all school vacations, Saturday family programs, pre-school programs, programs for home school families, teacher workshops, and adult education workshops.
The center also has exhibits, live animals, hiking trails, and a wonderful Nature Store with bird feeders, optics, bird seed, books, clothing, jewelry, gifts, and much more.
Property consists of 20 acres of mix landscape including forest, field, pond and orchard attracting birds as well as other animals. Parking of 100 +/- cars.
In 1835, a silk farm was set up on an area of land close to what is now the Silk Farm Audubon Center. Several hundred mulberry trees were planted and silk was produced for a short time. However, the project was unsuccessful and was abandoned after only a few years.
In 1938, a powerful hurricane felled millions of trees across the state. To salvage some of the wood, a huge number of logs were submerged in lakes and ponds until they could be sawn into lumber. Great Turkey Pond held more of those logs than any other water body in New Hampshire, and it had two temporary sawmills erected on its shore. Remnant logs that were never recovered can be seen along the shore to this day.
In 1972, ASNH purchased 15 acres of land and a small house on Silk Farm Road in Concord. The house became the Society’s state headquarters and a visitors’ center, and the fifteen acres became a wildlife sanctuary with trails. The property is surrounded by several hundred acres owned by neighboring St. Paul’s School, who granted ASNH license to use some of their land to create nature trails down to and around
the shore of Great Turkey Pond
The trails at the McLane Audubon Center traverse through a variety of habitats including open fields, oak and pine woodlands to the edge of Turkey Pond. Over sixty species of birds nest here in the spring and summer including ovenbirds, black and white warblers, black-capped chickadees, nuthatches, veeries and wood thrush. Look for vernal pools in the spring time that are breeding areas for salamanders, wood frogs and spring peepers. The open field area is a great place to look for Monarchs and other butterflies that use milkweed. Waterfowl use Turkey Pond as migratory stopover as well as a nesting area for mallards, black ducks and mergansers. You might catch a glimpse of or find evidence of mammals like white-tailed deer, moose, otter, mink and raccoon.
GPS – N 43 o11’17.03 W 071o34’41.99
Take I-89 to Exit 2 (Clinton Street). Go left off ramp. (Same direction for both ramps) Turn right at first blinking light, onto Silk Farm Road. Entrance to Center and Sanctuary is on the left. See sign.