Parcel 45 Wildlife Management Area
Parcel 45 Wildlife Management Area is located on the south side of New York State Route 50, just north of the Saratoga Mall. It was acquired because of unpaid taxes as a parcel of Forest Preserve, detached from the Adirondack Park, in 1928. The area is approximately 59 acres in size. New York State considered selling the property in 1979, however, the parcel was removed from the auction and transferred to the Bureau of Wildlife to manage and sustain a population of the endangered Karner blue butterfly.
The habitat presently includes a remnant of the Pine Barrens ecosystem of pitch pine, scrub oak, sweet fern, and blueberry, as well as invading white pine, grey birch, hazelnut, aspen, cinquefoil and bracken fern.
Hunting, fishing and trapping are integral parts of the conservation and management of New York's natural resources and the various wildlife management areas across the state are no exception. Whitetail deer entice archers to Parcel 45 while fox and coyote attract the interest of trappers. Hunting, trapping and other forms of wildlife-based recreation are permitted in accordance with the Environmental Conservation Law and its associated regulations. Please check the annual syllabus for appropriate regulations and season dates which apply to this wildlife management area.
Rules For Use
Parcel 45 Wildlife Management Area is open to the public throughout the year. Hunting and trapping are allowed in season on the entire area in accordance with the Environmental Conservation Law and regulations.
Boundaries and parking areas are clearly marked and any special regulations are conspicuously posted at all access points.
The following actions are prohibited: Picking or damaging lupine plants, over night camping, fires and the use of all motorized vehicles.
Please Observe Good Outdoor Manners: If You Carry It In, Carry It Out
Karner Blue Butterfly
In the open field and along the sandy access road grows the wild blue lupine. Lupine is the only food plant of the Karner blue caterpillar. Eggs are glued by adult females to the underside of lupine leaves or stems. In seven days they hatch as small, pea green caterpillars, exactly the color of the lupine leaf. They eat partly through the leaf, leaving translucent spots and producing a sweet secretion which attracts ants that perhaps protect it from predators and parasites. The larva grows 30 days before pupating. The adults are able to feed on the nectar of several other species.
The topside of adult male Karner blue butterfly wings are blue and have white fringes along the edge of the wing. The female is deep violet in the center and grades to dark brown toward the outer edge. The underside of the wings of both sexes are the same. Each are pale grey with white-ringed black spots and orange dots aligned in rows near the hind wing edge and often along the edge of the forewing as well. It is the orange dots that help distinguish it from two look-alike's: the eastern tailed blue, which has only two or three orange dots as well as a tiny tail; and the spring azure, which has no orange dots.
Game species such as ruffed grouse, whitetail deer, red fox, raccoon, and grey squirrel have been observed on Parcel 45. The site also supports a wide variety of songbirds, depending on the season.
The Bureau of Wildlife annually mows the field to encourage the growth of the wild blue lupine plant. Without mowing, other plant species will outgrow the lupine and force the plant to lay dormant in its root stage.
Take Exit 15 of the Adirondack Northway (I-87). Turn east onto State Route 50 - turn right if coming from the south or turn left if coming from the north. Take State Route 50 north. The parking area is on the right 1.4 miles from the exit, about 0.2 miles northeast of the Wilton Mall, directly across from Perry Road, look for large DEC sign.
The Parcel 45 WMA map shows the location of roads, parking areas and other facilities.