Erie County Parks, Recreation & Forestry

Erie County Parks, Recreation & Forestry Erie County will be a world-class community where People want to live | Businesses want to locate | Tourists want to visit

Reservation staff can be reached at 858-8355 Mon-Fri.
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Parks are open 7 AM-dusk year-round.

Operating as usual

It seems like one of WNY’s favorite vernal flowers is the Spring Beauty (unofficially according to our Insta & Twitter p...
03/23/2021

It seems like one of WNY’s favorite vernal flowers is the Spring Beauty (unofficially according to our Insta & Twitter polls!).

There are two species of Spring Beauty found in our parks, the Virginia Spring Beauty (Claytonia virginica) & the Carolina Spring Beauty (Claytonia caroliniana). Carolina Spring Beauty has more oval leaves than the other species and is often the kind you’ll find on your hikes.

While these small blooms are very beautiful, if you were a bee you might see something very different than just a pink and white flower. Our native bees are a type of insect that can see in UV light and the Spring Beauty is one of many flowers that uses UV on their flower parts (in this case the filaments) to direct insects to where their nectar is kept, which they produce a lot of for their size.

Keep a look out in the coming weeks for this flower which usually blooms throughout April in this area.

#youreriecountyparks
#10000acrestoexplore
#findyourownadventure

Erie County Parks, Recreation & Forestry
03/18/2021

Erie County Parks, Recreation & Forestry

WE'RE HIRING!
We are seeking individuals with customer service and cash register experience that would like to work as Cashiers and Starters at our Golf Courses! We are also looking to fill seasonal Maintenance Worker positions at the Courses.
CALL TODAY!!!

Warmer weather. Melodious bird song. Bright sunny days. Spring is upon us!We are going to take the next couple weeks to ...
03/16/2021

Warmer weather. Melodious bird song. Bright sunny days. Spring is upon us!

We are going to take the next couple weeks to highlight one of the best things about spring in WNY; our beautiful native spring flowers! 🌸

This week we are going to look at the Eastern Skunk Cabbage (Symplocarpus foetidus)!

Named after the potent smell it gives off when it’s leaves are crushed, Skunk Cabbage is our first emerging native flower. The hooded flower can produce its own heat & warmth is used to lure in early insects so they have a place to shelter from the cold. Inside they will pick up pollen and pollinate other Skunk Cabbage! Take a look at swampy areas for this flower right at this time of year!

Fun fact: Skunk Cabbage is related to a more well known species, Jack-in-the-Pulpit (Arisaema triphyllum).

#10000acrestoexplore
#YourErieCountyParks
#findyourownadventure

03/15/2021
Mark Poloncarz

Mark Poloncarz

Learn How Erie County Makes Maple Syrup! With the first day of spring just around the corner, maple syrup production is in full swing at the Erie County, NY Bureau of Forestry. Watch this video for a virtual tour of our "Sugar Shack" and learn more about the process from Erie County Parks, Recreation & Forestry Ranger Chuck!🍁🥞

WE'RE HIRING!We are seeking individuals with customer service and cash register experience that would like to work as Ca...
03/12/2021

WE'RE HIRING!
We are seeking individuals with customer service and cash register experience that would like to work as Cashiers and Starters at our Golf Courses! We are also looking to fill seasonal Maintenance Worker positions at the Courses.
CALL TODAY!!!

GOLF PASS SALES!!!It's a perfect time to signup for your 2021 Season Pass for Elma Meadows & Grover Cleveland Golf Cours...
03/11/2021

GOLF PASS SALES!!!
It's a perfect time to signup for your 2021 Season Pass for Elma Meadows & Grover Cleveland Golf Courses!
Staff will be at Elma Meadows this Friday and Saturday from 10 AM -2 PM selling passes.
Check the attached flyer for other Pass Sale dates and locations!

Often you will see us post about invasive species but why is it important to learn about them?.Well, first we have to un...
03/09/2021

Often you will see us post about invasive species but why is it important to learn about them?
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Well, first we have to understand just what we mean by an invasive species. Technically not every species non-native is an invasive. What makes a plant or animal invasive is how they impact the habitat around them. Bottom line, these species don’t play nice with the other native animals and plants. They can be a problem in many different ways like Japanese Knotweed, Phragmites & Purple Loosestrife all take over an area and cut out all other species. This is particularly bad because many of these habitats are water banks and wetlands that contain specialized species found no where else. Part of the reason they are able to gain an upper hand is that they have few or no predators in these habitats & they reproduce rapidly.
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Other plants like tree-of-heaven are nearly impossible to kill and they also help pave the way for other invasive species like the Spotted Lanternfly.
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Even species you might be familiar with are invasive. Common plants like Spotted Knapweed, Teasel, & Queen Anne’s Lace can force out native species in meadow habitats.
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Other invasive species are a problem because they target specific native species and threaten to wipe them out. If you’ve been paying attention recently you’ve probably heard about HWA (Hemlock Wooly Adelgid) and Emerald Ash Borer. Both of these species focus on one type of tree and only feed on that group or species, threatening to wipe them out.
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What can we do about these harmful species? The main thing all of us can do is learn to identify the invasive species in WNY and tell others when we see them. Following accounts like @wnyprism8 @nyshemlockinitiative @nysdec that often post about invasive species & host forums that will help you be an expert invasive spotter. When you find these invasive species you can use the @nyimapinvasives app on your smartphone or computer to help experts plan for their removal or management. For instance we use data from this app to locate hemlocks that need to be treated for HWA in our parks.
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#ecology #invasivespecies #invasive #youreriecountyparks #findyourownadventure #10000acrestoexplore

Test your nature knowledge!Why is there an icicle on this branch and on none of the others nearby?(Hint: this picture wa...
03/05/2021

Test your nature knowledge!

Why is there an icicle on this branch and on none of the others nearby?

(Hint: this picture was taken 3/5/21 and time of year is important!)

Salamanders Part 2!.This time we’ll talk about some other common salamanders that can be found under logs and leaf litte...
03/01/2021

Salamanders Part 2!
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This time we’ll talk about some other common salamanders that can be found under logs and leaf litter. The salamanders we are talking about today are all part of the Plethodontid family, also known as “lungless salamanders”! That’s right, all of these salamanders live on land but have no lungs. Because of this, these salamanders breathe through their skin & actually have similar chemicals called surfactants that our lungs have!
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First up we have the commonly seen Northern Two-lined Salamander (Eurycea bislineata). An easily identified adult looks like the first picture shown. They are yellow with two dark lines along their back. Their bellies are also a pale to light yellow color. These markings will help you distinguish this species from...
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The Allegheny Mountain Dusky Salamander (Desmognathus ochrophaeus). This species has a wide variety of colors as you can see from pictures 3-5 from some young nearly transparent individuals to older adults that are all dark brown. This species has “chevron marks” or a “V” pattern traveling down their back. Sometimes it’s easy to mix up young Two-lined & Allegheny so the best bet might be to take a peek at their belly. The Allegheny will have a light grey to grey-ish black belly.
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Next up we have one of the most prevalent salamanders in our forests, the Red-backed Salamander. This species is easy to identify by their beautiful red back and will be familiar to you if you’ve ever flipped over a moist log in the woods. These salamanders are excellent mothers, laying their eggs under logs and staying with them to ensure they are not eaten by predators.
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And the last lungless salamander for today, was one we actually already saw last week, the Northern Slimy Salamander (Plethodon glutinosus).
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In this area there so many other species like the Four-toed Salamander (Hemidactylium scutatum) & the Northern Spring Salamander (Gyrinophilus porphyriticus) which may be less common or harder to find. So feel free to explore and look for even more!
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#nature #ecology #herpetology #salamanders #forest #optoutside #youreriecountyparks #findyourownadventure #10000acrestoexplore #outdoors #herpsofinstagram #amphibian

We will be holding Golf Pass Sale Days at both Elma Meadows & Grover Cleveland Golf Courses in the coming weeks.Check th...
02/25/2021

We will be holding Golf Pass Sale Days at both Elma Meadows & Grover Cleveland Golf Courses in the coming weeks.
Check the attached flyer for dates and times at each course!

WE ARE HIRING!We are seeking qualified candidates for the position of Greenskeeper at Elma Meadows Golf Course! See atta...
02/25/2021

WE ARE HIRING!
We are seeking qualified candidates for the position of Greenskeeper at Elma Meadows Golf Course!
See attached posting for qualifications and more information.

ATTENTION!Ellicott Island Bark Park extended closing has begun. It is expected to re-open May 1st. For detailed info che...
02/24/2021
Closing Guidelines — Friends of Ellicott

ATTENTION!
Ellicott Island Bark Park extended closing has begun. It is expected to re-open May 1st. For detailed info check out our closing guidelines (https://friendsofellicott.com/closing-guidelines) & watch Friends of Ellicott Inc. - Ellicott Island Bark Park website/Twitter/Facebook for announcements.

Every late winter & early spring Ellicott Island Bark Park goes through a wet season. As the snow melts & the rainy season begins, water does not drain quickly from the island. The terrain of the island makes this difficult because the edges of the island are higher than the center, making the islan...

Part 1:It’s almost spring & you know what that means: Salamanders! So to appreciate these small denizens of the forest l...
02/24/2021

Part 1:
It’s almost spring & you know what that means: Salamanders! So to appreciate these small denizens of the forest let’s take a look at what species of salamander we’ve come across in our parks and how you can identify common salamanders you might see.
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The first species is one you are most likely to find because of it’s bold orange color and bolder attitude, the Red-spotted Newt (Notophthalmus viridescens viridescens). Unafraid of passing predators with its bright color warning everyone about of their distasteful tetrodotoxins. If you see these newts on land you are likely encountering them as efts, their juvenile phase.
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Did you know the earliest active salamander, Jefferson Salamanders (Ambystoma jeffersonianum), start to be seen walking across snow in WNY at the end of February! They are a light grey color with few or many light blue dots on their side. Like other mole salamanders (Ambystoma sp.) they spend most of their time underground but in the early spring they can be seen migrating to vernal pools. These temporary, fish-less pools are perfect places for them to lay their eggs.
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Next up is the Blue-spotted Salamander (Ambystoma laterale). This species often hybridizes with the Jefferson Salamander so it is usually hard to tell the difference species between the two and the hybrids in the wild. In some cases only a genetic test can tell!
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The next salamander in the 4th pic, is the Northern Slimy Salamander (Plethodon glutinosus) which can often be confused for the Blue-spotted Salamander. There are a couple of good ways to tell the difference. First, is that Slimy Salamanders have 3 toes in the front & 4 in the back. Blue-spotteds have 4 toes in the front & 5 in the back. Also, the spots on the Blue-spotted are a more vivid blue than the silvery-blue spots of the Slimy.
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The last picture shows a Spotted Salamander (Ambystoma maculatum). These are probably the most commonly found mole salamander in our parks. Nearly every vernal pool in our parks will be filled with Spotted Salamander eggs in the spring.
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#salamander #youreriecountyparks #findyourownadventure #10000acrestoexplore #newt #ecology #nature #outdoors #optoutside

WE ARE HIRING!We are seeking qualified candidates for the position of Greenskeeper at Elma Meadows Golf Course! See atta...
02/17/2021

WE ARE HIRING!
We are seeking qualified candidates for the position of Greenskeeper at Elma Meadows Golf Course!
See attached posting for qualifications and more information.

Lymantria dispar* is a commonly spotted invasive species that we find in all of our parks. This species of moth originat...
02/13/2021

Lymantria dispar* is a commonly spotted invasive species that we find in all of our parks. This species of moth originated from Europe and was first introduced in MA in the 1860’s. In an effort to stymie the populations of this moth many groups have formed to introduce biocontrols like viruses, bacteria and natural predators that target Lymantria dispar specifically. This allows us to reduce the number of moths we find in our area.

The male and female of this species look very different from one another. While the female is white with some thin black stripes on her wings, the males are a mottled brown color, as seen in the last photo. They also have striking large plume-like antenna they use to chemically smell for females.

The female moth, shown in the first picture, is flightless and a bright white. She will emerge in the summer and lay the fuzzy brown egg mass you see in the third picture. These egg masses can hold hundreds of eggs and will stay dormant until the spring when they hatch as caterpillars.

The forth picture is what an older caterpillar looks like, a long black body with small labyrinthine white stripes, hairy with protruding ruby spots on their backs. This is the stage where Lymantria dispar does the most damage, eating as many leaves as they can from our trees.

You can help with the spread of Lymantria dispar by reporting the egg masses, caterpillars, or moths you see on the app made by NY iMapInvasives. Our Parks Department and other specialists look at your observations and make decisions on how to control and manage invasive species you find. Also, you can follow them to learn about other invasive species that are starting to appear in the region like the Spotted Lanternfly (Lycorma delicatula).
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*Note: the common name for this moth contains a word that disparages a large group of disenfranchised people so we chose not to use it and instead used this moth’s scientific name

#YourErieCountyParks
#findyourownadventure
#10000acrestoexplore

Have you ever wondered what plants and animals other visitors have seen in your favorite park? While on a walk, have you...
02/09/2021

Have you ever wondered what plants and animals other visitors have seen in your favorite park?

While on a walk, have you ever seen an interesting plant but didn't know what it was or how to find out?

We have gathered all of the parks species lists on iNaturalist so they are easy to reference and available to the public. The best thing about these lists is that they were made by other park visitors and you too can contribute to these lists using the iNaturalist app!

As shown in the following album, you can access these lists on your computer even if you don't have the app on your phone.

So get out there and see if you can find even more amazing species and let us know what you find by using iNaturalist!

#youreriecountyparks
#findyourownadventure
#10000acrestoexplore

Erie County, NY
02/08/2021

Erie County, NY

Need some exercise or just a little fresh air? Erie County's parks are open, with lots of safe, socially-distant winter activities. And why not explore some of the lesser-known, less-populated gems in the county's extensive system?

Go to erie.gov/parks & tap or click "Find the Erie County park or forest closest to you."

Cc: Erie County Parks, Recreation & Forestry

Erie County Parks, Recreation & Forestry
02/07/2021

Erie County Parks, Recreation & Forestry

Get out and get active!! Grab your winter gear and go explore one of our awesome parks!! Sprague Brook Park has plenty o...
01/20/2021

Get out and get active!!

Grab your winter gear and go explore one of our awesome parks!! Sprague Brook Park has plenty of snow so grab your sled, snowshoes or XC ski’s and get outside!!

Check our winter sports page for availability of winter sports in each of our parks!
🛷⛸🎿

SNOW!!! We’ve waited so long and now we finally have some nice fresh snow to sled on. Check our winter sports page for a...
01/18/2021

SNOW!!!

We’ve waited so long and now we finally have some nice fresh snow to sled on. Check our winter sports page for availability of winter sports in each of our parks.

We currently have excellent sledding conditions here at Chestnut Ridge Park. Be sure to wear your mask, grab a hot chocolate at our café and have fun! 🛷❄️☕️

#YourErieCountyParks
#10000acrestoexplore
#findyournextadventure

ANNOUNCEMENT:Campsites for the 2021 Season at Sprague Brook Campground are now available to reserve!Visit: Erie.gov/park...
01/15/2021

ANNOUNCEMENT:
Campsites for the 2021 Season at Sprague Brook Campground are now available to reserve!
Visit: Erie.gov/parks or call (716)858-8355
#YourErieCountyParks

ANNOUNCEMENT:Campsites for the 2021 Season at Sprague Brook Campground will be available to reserve beginning tomorrow, ...
01/14/2021

ANNOUNCEMENT:
Campsites for the 2021 Season at Sprague Brook Campground will be available to reserve beginning tomorrow, Friday January 15th!
Visit: Erie.gov/parks or call (716)858-8355
#YourErieCountyParks

ANNOUNCEMENT:Campsites for the 2021 Season at Sprague Brook Campground will be available to reserve beginning this Frida...
01/13/2021

ANNOUNCEMENT:
Campsites for the 2021 Season at Sprague Brook Campground will be available to reserve beginning this Friday January 15th!
Visit: Erie.gov/parks or call (716)858-8355
#YourErieCountyParks

Erie County Parks, Recreation & Forestry's cover photo
01/12/2021

Erie County Parks, Recreation & Forestry's cover photo

Photos from Erie County Parks, Recreation & Forestry's post
01/11/2021

Photos from Erie County Parks, Recreation & Forestry's post

Address

95 Franklin St, Fl 12th
Buffalo, NY
14202

General information

Reservation staff can be reached at 858-8355.

Opening Hours

Monday 08:30 - 16:00
Tuesday 08:30 - 16:00
Wednesday 08:30 - 16:00
Thursday 08:30 - 16:00
Friday 08:30 - 16:00

Telephone

(716) 858-8355

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Comments

Hey is Bennett open today?
Is Bennett beach open for swimming today (8/22/2020)
Is swimming allowed today at Bennett Beach? (Sat 8/15)
How's Bennett looking for today?
Is Bennett open today? I didn't see an update on here or the website.
Hi. I just wanted put in a formal request for a bigger parking lot for 18 Mile Creek Park. The lot can only hold approximately 8 cars. For a park that is 466 acres, that is just not enough space for parking. That works out to 58 acres per car load. This park is a beautiful gem and for only 8 carloads of people to be able to park there and explore, it is unfair. People have been ticketed daily at this point for trying to enjoy this park. Please help allow more than 8 families to be there legally at once. Is this possible? Thank you!
Can you still camp at Sprague Brook Park? I have reservations (soon) and have heard zip
Hello, Is this the page that updates about Bennett daily? It opened june 1, correct? Thank You.
Are the restrooms at Ellicott Creek Park open, and can the grills be used at this time? Thanks in advance.
Are we not able to reserve/rent a shelter at Como Park? Your online system shows all dates are unavailable.
When are you opening camping at sprague brook
Anyone know if Kayaking is allowed at Como Lake Park? If so whats the best place to launch? TIA