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Moore Woodlands – Groton / property details / get directions / trail map

This property can be accessed from Judson Ave. and Capstan Ave. and connects with Beebe Pond loop trail. It also can wind through wetlands that flow to the Mystic River.

Total Hike & Seek Targets: 6

Don’t forget to take photos of your finds and share on Instagram with #myavalonia or email to!


Take some time to read all the great information posted here.


This holly tree is unusual.  It is an evergreen, but has leaves, not needles, with spikes to prevent animals from munching on them.  Take a closer look.  How do you think the tree got here?  Hint: what creatures use the berries as a food source.


Look for a big white pine tree with a large area of damage. This is another evergreen. Part of this trunk seems to have been ripped away. What do you think happened? Is the tree still alive? How can you tell?


Throughout the Moore Woodlands, look for this kind of sign on different trees, placed to help you learn to identify the many species that grow here. How many did you find? Can you find a leaf on the ground or on the tree that matches it?


Look for places, low on tree trunks where the bark looks rubbed way. On cedar trees the bark even shreds. These are “buck rubs”. Each year in late spring through summer, male deer grow new antlers. They are living bone, covered in soft velvet and they get itchy! So the deer rub their antlers on the trees to relieve the itch and remove the velvet. By summer the antlers look strong and clean and light tan colored. In late fall and winter, the bucks rub their antlers for another reason: to mark their territory. A way for deer to know who else is in their neighborhood.


What happened here? At some point when this tree was young and very flexible, a vine twisted around it. Most likely it was the invasive vine, Oriental bittersweet, which circles as it climbs. You can see the scars. The vine cut into the trunk of the sapling, weakening it and causing it to nearly break. Probably a good volunteer came along and cut the vine. The tree is strong, it created healing growth to cover the broken area, and will keep growing but will always bear the scars.