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Red Maple on Refuge

Red Maple (Acer rubrum), also known as Swamp, Water or Soft maple, is a native tree that blooms in late February and now bears immature red seeds. The seeds will be eaten by songbirds and squirrels before most other seeds and fruits are available. Red maple is a deciduous tree that survives on the area’s deep organic soils where oak, hickory, and beech trees do not. Red maple typically grow to a height of 40′ – 60 ft. The tree’s soft wood decays easily, providing cavities for nesting songbirds and small mammals. The attractive red seeds can be seen on Red maple trees and on the ground at Pocosin Lakes, Mattamuskeet, and Alligator River National Wildlife Refuges.