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Mustikkamaa

Deciduous forest in Mustikkamaa. Photo Jan Nyman.

Mustikkamaa is located around five kilometers east of the city centre. It borders the Itämelmo residential area and the railroad and is situated on the same moraine ridge as Suvilahti and Purola. It covers an area of roughly 42 hectares, with forest types ranging from groves to dry heathland forests. As implied by the name, blueberries and wood sorrel are evidently found in this area. The many trails throughout Mustikkamaa make it is easy for visitors to familiarize themselves and find their way around the area.

Species of birds living in this area are common woodland birds, such as the chaffinch, European robin and willow warbler. A novelty during recent years has been the wood warbler, which inhabit this area more than anywhere else in Vaasa. One can find up to ten wood warblers while on a visit to Mustikkamaa during the months of May through to June. Other species nesting in the area include the lesser spotted woodpecker, thrush nightingale, icterine warbler, garden warbler and blackcap.

The best time of year to visit Mustikkamaa for bird watching is in April to July. The most enthusiastic songbirds rise in the early hours of the morning, around 5am to 9am. The daily weather, as expected, has a profound effect on bird activity. During a warm, sunny day, chirping birds in song can be heard bright and early, being at its most powerful. Rainy weather, however, decreases activity significantly, to such an extent that birdlife seems non-existent to this area.

Heathland forest in Mustikkamaa. Photo Jan Nyman.