Barn A barn at Sunny Valley Preserve gets a renovation. © Andrew Benson/The Nature Conservancy

Stories in Connecticut

A Barn for the Birds

Beautiful blue barn swallows swoop gracefully over farmland at the Conservancy’s Sunny Valley Preserve.

“These birds rely on human-built structures to survive,” explains Wayne Woodard, the preserve’s director. “So, we kept them in mind as we made plans to restore a 40-year-old barn on the property.”

The barn restoration is part of the Conservancy’s work along Wewaka Brook—a set of projects helping restore and sustain grasslands for birds, early successional woodlands for New England cottontail rabbits, and even working land for five local farms.

The renovated barn will serve as a multi-use home base for these projects, providing much-needed storage room for tractors, tools, and conservation project equipment. But this project will have more direct benefits for nature too, including a set of small doors near the roof that allows barn swallows to nest in the building without compromising the building’s other uses.