Birds and Wildlife

Birds and Wildlife2021-04-20T11:34:04-05:00

The Birds of Horicon Marsh

The interior of Horicon Marsh is home to a wide variety of marsh birds, from ducks and geese to pelicans, herons, egrets and cormorants. The scattered woodlands also house a great array of songbirds, which can be found during the spring and fall migration as well as summer nesting populations. A close look may reveal a range of colorful songsters hiding among the dense foliage!

Fall Migration of Canada Geese

To some, the name Horicon Marsh has almost become synonymous with Canada geese. Each fall the largest migratory flock of Canada geese in the world migrates through Horicon Marsh, with peak numbers reaching more than 200,000! The geese begin to arrive in mid-September, but the most popular time to see this fall spectacle is in mid-October. As numbers approach the fall peak, other wildlife is still abundant, and fall colors paint a perfect background.

Rare and Endangered Species

For those who enjoy wildlife, Horicon Marsh has long been known as one of the best places in the upper Midwest to see birds. While 300 different kinds of birds have been recorded at the marsh over the years, it is home to a number of threatened and endangered species, affording birders the occasional rare sighting.

Animal Sightings

See what visitors have spotted this week or share your own pics!

Marsh Mammals

While birds are among the most visible forms of wildlife, many other animals inhabit Horicon Marsh. Although many mammals come out at night, there is always the chance of seeing white-tailed deer in the uplands or muskrats, mink, and river otters as they swim through the marsh’s shallow waters.

Reptiles and Amphibians

Wildlife comes in all shapes and sizes. Frogs, turtles and snakes are as much a part of a healthy wetland ecosystem as its birds and mammals. Painted turtles and snapping turtles are abundant at Horicon Marsh as well as several different kinds of frogs. Only three species of common snakes live in the area, and none of these are venomous. In fact, most of them are rarely even seen, though they play an important role, nonetheless.

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