Historically, the rolling fields in Manassas National Battlefield Park were used for agricultural purposes. Since many grassland birds in Virginia are on the decline, one of the park's goals is to promote better quality habitat for grassland birds, while still maintaining the agricultural heritage of the park. To this end, we are maintaining grass and shrub lands using a combination of agricultural (hay) leases and mowing by our maintenance staff.
Declining grassland species known to occur in the park include: the Eastern Meadowlark, Barn Owl, Northern Harrier, Savannah Sparrow, and the Grasshopper Sparrow. The Barn Owl is endangered in seven states and is listed as a species of "special concern" in two states. We currently have 10 species of special concern within the park.
We have installed nest boxes throughout the park. Presently, the park has Barn Owl, Kestrel, and Bluebird boxes. To date, 168 species have been documented within the park.