ALBERT J. SOUSA CAMBRIDGE WOODLANDS CARLSON WOODS CONNOR MILL TRAIL FOWLER BOG FREEDOM FOREST GREAT FARM BROOK GREAT MOOSE WETLAND KANOKOLUS BOG MOULTON’S MILL PLEASANT LAKE
Albert J. Sousa Preserve
The Sousa Preserve, acquired in 2013, is comprised of 200 acres of forest, wetland and fields adjacent to the confluence Sebasticook River and 25 Mile Stream. Acquisition was made possible by the Maine Natural Resource Conservation Program, The Nature Conservancy, Land for Maine’s Future, the Maine Outdoor Heritage Fund, John Sage Foundation, William Wharton Trust, Elmina B. Sewall Foundation, Davis Conservation Foundation and individual donors.
It includes just under a mile of frontage on the river and almost a quarter mile along 25 Mile Stream which both support the largest alewife run in the eastern U.S. They also hold American eel, shad, and sturgeon and are identified as potential salmon streams. The habitat is some of the best in the state for state-endangered mussel species. The riparian floodplain forest is characterized by silver maple, bur oak and ash. Situated between two rivers, it provides an important wildlife corridor for moose, deer, bobcat, fisher and black bear and large groups of Bald Eagle perch here to exploit the fish run. Surveys have also identified diverse communities of birds and invertebrate. The former Belfast-Moosehead Lake Railroad line bisects the land.
Although there is currently no trail system, recent improvements included working with For Good Measure Farm, a local producer of flowers and produce to meet their needs and improve habitat for grassland birds, and planting an American Chestnut genetic conservation orchard in a collaboration with The American Chestnut Foundation. Learn more about the project!
Directions from downtown Unity to the Sousa Preserve in Burnham:
Travel west on Route 139/School St. from Main Street 1.1 miles to Prairie Rd. Turn right and then drive 5.7 miles north. It becomes S. Horseback Rd. after 1.7 miles but it is the same road. At the blinking red light, turn left onto Troy Rd. and travel 2.9 miles. The preserve kiosk just after the old Burnham Village School. The preserve includes land on both sides of the road. Parking is on the road shoulder at this time.