3663 Walnut Creek Road
"Metahqua" is the Shawnee word for "tree", and was so named by the donor of this 234 acre nature preserve-Elizabeth Kitchen. The property was historically used for agriculture, and is now composed of upland hardwood forest, tall grass fields in the floodplain of Little Walnut Creek, a large pond, and a newly constructed wetland. Also on the property is a 100 year old schoolhouse that had been converted into a residence, which is occupied by the caretaker.
Ms. Kitchen's love for the land is apparent as you walk the preserve and see the care that was taken to ensure a variety of habitats for birds and wildlife. Signs of mink, muskrat, and beaver can be observed on the banks of Little Walnut Creek, and the tall grass fields are 'singing' grounds for woodcocks. A bobcat was photographed here in 2016, and 141 species of birds have been sighted on the preserve as of January, 2017. Walking trails are maintained in the grassy fields surrounding Little Walnut Creek, and the Pawpaw trail meanders through the old field and wooded upland portions of the preserve.