John H Boylan State Airport (Island Pond Airport)

Tips for Birding

Birds of Interest

Vesper Sparrow, Northern Harrier.

About this Location

John H Boylan State Airport is named for John H. Boylan, a political figure who served as President pro tempore of the Vermont State Senate. It covers an area of 188 acres at an elevation of 1,194 feet. It has one runway with a turf surface.

About Nulhegan Basin Important Bird Area

See all hotspots at Nulhegan Basin Important Bird Area

This is a large area in the Vermont context; 25,700 acres (40 square miles). It is 21 miles north to south; and 10 miles west to east at the widest. It is the most boreal of Vermont’s landscapes, in large part due to its height above sea level. It has good examples of a variety of boreal ecosystems enhanced by significant topographical relief in spite of no major, tall mountains. The size and shape of the IBA reflect its history of ownership rather than ecological boundaries. Cherished in that part of the state are the expanses of unbroken wildlands notwithstanding the logging history.

The Nulhegan Basin IBA is Vermont’s largest IBA comprising a mosaic of forest and wetland habitat types. The predominance of boreal habitats is typical of forests found further to the north and as such supports a number of species rarely found in Vermont. The IBA is centered around the Nulhegan Basin and stretches from Lewis Pond in the north to the Granby Stream and its tributaries to the south. Included in this area are the Moose, Ferdinand, and the Yellow bogs. Vermont Natural community types include Lowland and Montane Spruce-Fir forests, Northern Hardwood Forest, Spruce-Fir-Tamarack and Black Spruce swamps, Dwarf Shrub, and Black Spruce Woodland bogs and Intermediate Fen.

This IBA includes the Conte National Wildlife Refuge and Wenlock and West Mountain Wildlife Management Areas as well as a number of other state-owned lands. Much of this land was acquired through one of the largest land deals in Vermont. Controversy has revolved around the management of the state lands and access to areas for timber harvesting. Surveys for Spruce Grouse are conducted every 2 years. Other issues include the accidental shooting of Spruce grouse by hunters and invasive species.

Features

  • Roadside viewing

  • Restrooms on site

  • Wheelchair accessible trail

  • Entrance fee

Content from Nulhegan Basin IBA (National Audubon) webpage, Wikipedia, and Ian Worley

Last updated January 22, 2024