Nature Links at Riverbend Park
[ 8700 Potomac Hills Street ] [ Great Falls, VA 22066 ] [ 703-759-9018 ]
Riverbend Park and its diverse habitats afford you the chance to enjoy nature at all levels, and in all seasons. Hardy visitors on a snowy day may delight in the wildfowl on the river and the bluebird flocks in the trees. Summer visitors will enjoy the Ruby-throated Hummingbirds as they zip around the Trumpet Creeper. Enjoy this beautiful natural area in which all wildlife and plants are protected, and removal or harm is prohibited by law.
The Birds of Riverbend Park
The Bird Checklist includes 191 species of birds which have been observed from the park. An additional 19 birds are listed which have been recorded historically. The list was compiled from staff, volunteers, and local birders.
Spring is wildflower time. Many species of spring ephemerals grace the river banks from March to June. Take a walk between carpets of Virginia Bluebells and Spring Beauties, and look for Wild Ginger, Dutchman's Breeches and Trout Lilies.
As spring turns into summer and then to fall, so the wildflower palette changes. Yellow Wingstem and pink Lady's Thumb give way to purple Asters and yellow Goldenrods as the days shorten and the temperature drops.
Evening picnickers can enjoy the sunset as it plays across the trees on the Maryland shore. Perhaps a Bald Eagle or Osprey will cross the skyline. For the dedicated birder the meadow is a year-round resource. Spring and fall migrants are a particular highlight. A walk along the river provides views of many warbler species; and in winter many kinds of waterfowl. Look for Red-headed ducks, Tundra Swans and Buffleheads as well as all the usual suspects.
For the reptile and amphibian fan Riverbend Park is a great place. Snakes,salamanders, frogs, skinks and turtles are abundant and can be easily discovered with a little patience. Riverbend staff participate in several national "herp" surveys with particular emphasis on amphibians.
For the budding naturalist we offer the chance to help us in our efforts to catalog Riverbend's fauna and flora. We welcome help from school-age children, teens and adults. Help us with our bluebird monitoring program, look for rare plants or search for salamanders. Check out the volunteer page.
And last but not least, there are always those perennial favorites - the Canada Geese and the White-tailed Deer.