2011 FIELD TRIP SERIES
Thanks to all who helped make our 2011 field trip series a success. Stay tuned for details about our 2012 Field Trip Series!

WWA invites you to experience the wonders of wetlands first hand on one of our upcoming field trips. We hope that through enjoying wetlands on a field trip you will increase your understanding of the many different types of wetlands found in Wisconsin. You'll learn about the variety of wildlife and plants that rely on these special ecosystems, how Wisconsin manages wetlands, and how wetlands help support Wisconsin’s economy.

Our trips are designed as a special opportunity both for our members and the public. We hope to expand the circle of people who care about wetlands. Only by knowing a place will we love and protect it. Unless otherwise noted, field trips are free for WWA members and $10 for non-members. To register for a field trip, send an email to register[at]wisconsinwetlands.org or call our office at 608-250-9971.

Our 2011 field trip season continues to introduce you to Wisconsin’s wetland heritage and its 100 high quality Wetland Gems. WWA field trips to Wetland Gems are identified with the symbol on the left. Click here for information about other events at Wetland Gems sites sponsored by our partners and be sure to visit our Calendar to learn about other partner programming about wetlands.

This year we also celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands, which is an intergovernmental treaty providing a framework for national action and international cooperation for the conservation and wise use of wetlands and their resources. Our 2011 field trip series includes trips to two sites in Wisconsin recognized by the Ramsar Convention as Wetlands of International Importance: Horicon Marsh and the Upper Mississippi River Floodplain Wetlands, and the soon to be nominated Door Peninsula Coastal Wetlands. These trips are identified with the symbol on the left. WWA serves on the U.S. National Ramsar Committee and is working to have more of Wisconsin’s most important wetlands designated as Wetlands of International Importance.

2011 FIELD TRIP SCHEDULE
April 14 - Frogs Night Out at the Mazomanie Wildlife Area (Dane Co.)
April 28 - Frogs of Bog Evening Walk at Cedarburg Bog (Ozaukee Co.)
May 21 - Father-of-Waters, An Upper Mississippi River Exploration (Crawford Co.)
May 22 - Wetland Water Bugs, Horicon Marsh Naturalist Program (Dodge Co.)
June 4 - National Trails Day Kohler-Andrae Wetland Gems Presentation (Sheboygan Co.)
July 4 - Butterflies & Dragonflies of Swamplovers Preserve (Dane Co.)
July 23 - St. Louis River Estuary aboard the LL Smith Research Vessel (Douglas Co.) CANCELLED
August 6 - Cherokee Marsh Ecological Restoration by Canoe (Dane Co.)
August 14 - Shorebirds of Southern Wisconsin (Columbia/Jefferson/Dane Co.)
August 27 - Butterflies & Blossoms at Pheasant Branch (Dane Co.)
September 3 - Family Bike Ride to Zeloski Marsh (Jefferson Co.)
September 17 - Train Ride into Tiffany Bottoms Wildlife Area (Buffalo/Pepin Co.)
October 1 - Horicon Marsh Wildlife Hike (Dodge Co.)
October 22 - Birding Old Marsh Road (Dodge Co.)
November 12 - Swan Watch & Waterfowl Observation Day (Brownsville, MN)

WHO SHOULD PARTICIPATE: Our trip offerings are appropriate for people of all ages and strike a nice balance between quiet observation and active movement through wetlands. We have many trips available for multiple generations of a family to attend; it’s a wonderful experience for children, parents and grandparents to all learn together. Read descriptions below for age appropriateness.

HOW TO PREPARE: Bring water and dress appropriately for weather, walking and wading (recommended summer marsh wear: long sleeved shirts, long pants, rubber boots, wide brimmed hat, and mosquito repellent). In most cases, field trips will occur rain or shine, but we will cancel in case of hazardous weather. Call WWA or the trip leader the day before if the weather is questionable. Be aware that Lyme disease is present in parts of the state. Prevent tick bites by wearing clothes that cover your skin and by checking your skin and clothing for ticks after participating in field trips.



Frogs Night Out at the Mazomanie Wildlife Area
Dane County
RESCHEDULED Thursday, April 28, 6:45 - 9:00 PM
Field Trip leader: Bob Hay, retired WDNR Conservation Biologist
With the
Madison Audubon Society and the Natural Resources Foundation
Preregister online with Natural Resources Foundation. Adults $10, Kids $5.

Family Friendly Trip!

Bring a sense of adventure as you visit the Mazomanie Wildlife Area, part of the Lower Wisconsin Riverway & Wyalusing State Park Wetland Gem. On this trip, you will sense the world from a different perspective, through sound. Participants will listen for a variety of frog-calls as well as learn about frog lifestyles and wetland ecology.


Frogs of the Bog Evening Walk at Cedarburg Bog
Ozaukee County
Thursday, April 28, 7:00 - 9:00 PM
Field trip leaders: Jim Reinartz and Kate Redmond
With the
Friends of Cedarburg Bog
Free and open to the public. To register, contact WWA at 608-250-9971 or by email at register[at]wisconsinwetlands.org

Family Friendly Trip!

Cedarburg Bog, a Wetland Gem, is the most intact large bog in southeastern Wisconsin and is composed of a mosaic of vegetation types. Jim Reinartz from the UW-Milwaukee Field Station and Kate Redmond, photographer, writer, editor, educator, and wetlands advocate, will guide us through the bog. We will listen for a variety of frog calls including wood frog, spring peeper, chorus frog, and American toad and possibly Cope's gray tree frog and eastern gray tree frog. We'll also learn about frog lifestyles and mating behaviors as well as ecology of the bog.


Father-of-Waters, an Upper Mississippi River Exploration
Crawford County. Boat departs from Lansing, Iowa
Saturday, May 21, 10:00 AM - 12:00 Noon
Field trip leaders: John Wetzel, retired Wisconsin DNR Wildlife Manager and Tod Highsmith, ornithologist
Registration fees: $25-Member/ $32-Non-member/ $17- Kids 4-12
3 & younger- Free
Join WWA today to get member rates. Space is limited on this popular trip!
Download a registration form here or call 608-250-9971 to reserve your spot.

Family Friendly Trip! This trip is perfect for all ages.

Cancellation Policy: WWA will refund registration fees for cancellations made on or before Friday, May 6, 2011. No refunds will be made after this date. Thank you for understanding our need for this policy.

Join Wisconsin Wetlands Association for a two-hour tour of the Upper Mississippi River! We’ll explore a variety of riverine wetland habitats on this riverboat trip, including open backwaters and side channels that border floodplain forests of this Wetland Gem, the Upper Mississippi & Trempealeau River National Wildlife Refuges. Trip leader John Wetzel will discuss the area’s importance for fish, wildlife, birds, and people. Ornithologist Tod Highsmith will help participants identify birds along the way. This site was also designated a Ramsar Wetland of International Importance in 2010 and a Wetland Gem in 2009. We expect to see a significant variety of migrating and nesting birds since the Mississippi River Flyway is one of the most noteworthy bird migration flyways in the world and this tour occurs during peak spring migration for many species of birds. This is sure to be a beautiful morning on the River.


Wetland Water Bugs
Dodge County
Sunday, May 22, 11:00 AM - Noon
Field Trip Leaders: WDNR Horicon Marsh State Wildife Area staff
With the
Horicon Marsh Wildlife Area
Free and open to the public.
To register, contact WWA at 608-250-9971 or by email at register[at]wisconsinwetlands.org

Family Friendly Trip!

Join WWA and the WDNR Horicon Marsh State Wildife Area staff on a hike through the Horicon Marsh, a Wetland Gem. Horicon Marsh is also a designated Ramsar Wetland of International Importance.


Wetland Gems at Kohler-Andrae State Park Trails Day
Sheboygan County
Saturday, June 4, Time: 7:00 - 8:00 PM
Kohler-Andrae State Park, Sanderling Nature Center Auditorium
Presenter: Brooke Bushman, WWA Outreach Programs Coordinator
With
Kohler-Andrae State Park. State Park Pass or Day-use pass required
To register, contact WWA at 608-250-9971 or by email at register[at]wisconsinwetlands.org.
Family Friendly Presentation!

Creating trails takes many hours of planning, labor, and negotiating. Access to many of our Wetland Gems sites would be hindered without maintained trails or boardwalks, such as the Kohler Dunes Cordwalk that takes you to Wetland Gem Kohler-Andrae Dunes. We are honored that Kohler-Andrae State Park has asked us to give our Wetland Gems presentation at their park to honor National Trails Day. If you missed the 2009 Wetland Gems launch celebrations and wonder what all this Wetland Gems talk is about, or would like a refresher, join us at the park. Make a weekend of it and camp out at the park for the Wisconsin State Park Open House day. On Sunday, June 5th Kohler-Andrae State Park will be hosting many fun and family appropriate activities.


Butterflies & Dragonflies of Swamplovers Preserve
Dane County
Monday, July 4, Time: 9:30 AM - 1:00 PM
Field Trip Leaders: Karl & Dorothy Legler and Tod Highsmith
With the
Madison Audubon Society and the Southern Wisconsin Butterfly Association
Free and open to the public. To register, contact WWA at 608-250-9971 or by email at register[at]wisconsinwetlands.org
Family Friendly Trip!

This preserve on private land consists of remnant wetlands, remnant bluff prairie, restored tall grass prairie, and dry hilly oak-hickory woodland. We'll observe and learn about various butterflies and dragonflies as we explore the preserve. Bring binoculars (close-focusing ones work best). At the top of the ridge we will picnic at a shelter. Bring your own food and drink.

Details: Call Karl Legler at (608) 643-4926 or cell (608) 228-0743 with questions about the trip or the weather is questionable.

Directions: Travel west from Cross Plains on Hwy 14. Just outside town take County KP to the right (north) and go about 1.3 miles and turn left at the Swamplovers sign.

Cherokee Marsh Ecological Restoration by Canoe
Dane County
Saturday, August 6, Time: 8:00 AM -- Noon
Field Trip Leaders: Russ Hefty, City of Madison Conservation Resource Supervisor
With the
Madison Audubon Society and the Friends of Cherokee Marsh
Free and open to the public. To register, contact WWA at 608-250-9971 or by email at register[at]wisconsinwetlands.org
Family Friendly Trip!

Details: Bring your own canoe or kayak to get a duck's-eye-view of the restoration activities ongoing at Cherokee Marsh, a Wetland Gem on the northeast side of Madison. Leader Russ Hefty will show us how the shoreline of this floating bog is being stabilized by plantings to form a vegetation breakwater and silt fence. This should be peak bloom for the thousands of American Lotus and water lilies used as a buffer! We also hope to see Great Egrets and other wetland birds.

Directions: On the north side of Madison take Northport Drive (Highway 113). Then turn north onto Sherman Ave at the stoplight at Northport Dr. and Sherman Ave. Drive north until you reach the Cherokee Marsh parking lot at the end of Sherman Ave.


Shorebirds of Southern Wisconsin
Columbia, Jefferson or Dane Counties - Wherever the birds are!
Sunday, August 14, Time: 8:00 AM - Noon
Field Trip Leaders: Peter Fissel and Quentin Yoerger
With the
Madison Audubon Society
Free and open to the public. To register, contact WWA at 608-250-9971 or by email at register[at]wisconsinwetlands.org

This trip will go to wherever the shorebirds are, based on current conditions and reports! Possible destinations include Columbia, Jefferson, or Dane counties. Bring a scope if you have one. Contact Peter Fissel at (608) 226-0260 (before 10 p.m.) or pfissel@library.wisc.edu only if you have a question about the trip.

Details: Meet at 8:00 AM and depart from the Cub Foods parking lot on the northeast side of Madison.

Directions: In Madison, from the intersection of Highway 51 (Stoughton Road) and Highway 30, go North on Hwy 51 for about 0.3 miles. Turn right on Commercial Ave. and then left on Nakoosa Trail. The Cub Foods parking lot will be on your right.

Butterflies & Blossoms at Pheasant Branch
Dane County
Saturday, August 27, Time: 10:00 a.m. -- Noon
Field Trip leader: Dreux Watermolen, Wisconsin DNR
With the
Madison Audubon Society, Southern Wisconsin Butterfly Association, and the Pheasant Branch Conservancy
Free and open to the public. To register, contact WWA at 608-250-9971 or by email at register[at]wisconsinwetlands.org
Family Friendly Trip!

Join us on a walk through the lovely Pheasant Branch, a Wetland Gem in Middleton. The many beautiful asters should be in bloom, and we hope lots of butterflies will be nectaring on these flowers. Expect several species, including Monarchs, sulfurs, blues, and possibly some southern immigrants, such as Common Buckeye and Painted Lady. We will also learn more about restoration efforts at the conservancy.

Details: Long pants, a hat, water, and sturdy hiking shoes are recommended. Close-focusing binoculars are also useful. (We will have a few extra binoculars.) We will hike two or three miles. Contact the trip leader only if you have questions: Dreux Watermolen: (608) 266-8931, dreux.watermolen[at]Wisconsin.gov. Meet in Middleton at 10:00 a.m. (see below for directions). The trip will last about 2 hours.

Directions: At the west end of Lake Mendota take Allen Boulevard north, then turn left on Century Avenue (Co. M). Track your mileage as you turn right onto Old Creek Road and then right on Pheasant Branch Road going north 1.2 miles to the small county parking lot at the beginning of the gated road.

Family Bike Ride to Zeloski Marsh
Dane/Jefferson Counties
Saturday, September 3, Time: 1:30 - 4:30 PM
Field Trip Leaders: Mary Linton, WWA Board Chair, and Tod Highsmith, WWA Board Secretary
Members: FREE, Non-members: $10
WI State Trail Pass required for riders 16 & older ($4/day or $20/annual)
To register, contact WWA at 608-250-9971 or by email at register[at]wisconsinwetlands.org

Family Friendly Trip!

Enjoy an easy ride through central Wisconsin’s countryside on the Glacial Drumlin Trail. Along the way we will stop for bird, butterfly, dragonfly, and general critter watching in a lakeside marsh, tamarack swamp and the large, restored Zeloski Marsh. Tod and Mary will be your spotters on the 7-8 mile (almost flat) round trip. In addition to wetland critters, we might get a peek at some bison! Bring your binoculars so you don’t miss anything.

For those of you without bike transport or who don't have one, adult bikes, one child's and one two-passenger child trailer are available to rent at the Headquarters (our departure site). Rentals cost $10 for the half-day. PLEASE CALL AHEAD TO RESERVE AT (920) 648-8774.

Details: Meet at the Lake Mills Glacial Drumlin Trail Headquarters located at the old train depot on the south end of Lake Mills. There is plenty of parking and restrooms at the trail head. Visit the WI DNR Glacial Drumlin Trail and the Friends of the Glacial Drumlin State Bicycle Trail websites for more information. Bring snacks and plenty of water for our stops along the way.

Directions: Lake Mills is located 35 minutes east of Madison and one hour west of Milwaukee. From I-94, take Exit 259 (WI-89 - Lake Mills/Waterloo). Go south on WI-89 for two miles. Turn right on South Main Street to 1213 S. Main Street, Lake Mills. Look for the old train depot and park at the Glacial Drumlin trailhead.

Train Ride into Tiffany Wildlife Area
Buffalo and Pepin Counties
Saturday, September 17, 9:30 AM - 3:00 PM
Field Trip Leaders: Prof. Sean Hartnett (Confluence Center for Chippewa River Studies), Judy Lively (WDNR), Brent Weaver (WDNR Buffalo Co. Forester) & Chippewa Valley Motor Car Association Representatives

Registration fees: $13-Member/ $22-Non-member/ $8-12 & Under
Join WWA today to get member rates.
Download a registration form here or call 608-250-9971 to reserve your spot on this space limited, popular trip!
Family Friendly Trip!

Cancellation Policy: WWA will refund registration fees for cancellations made on or before Friday, September 2, 2011. No refunds will be made after this date. Thank you for understanding our need for this policy.

Take a ride in an antique open-air train eight miles into the Tiffany Wildlife Area, which includes parts of the recently designated Lower Chippewa River Delta Wetland Gem. Located along the Chippewa River as it flows into the Mississippi River in Buffalo and Pepin counties, Tiffany Wildlife Area protects one of the most extensive river deltas in the Midwest. This unique wet forest is characterized by transitions and patches, two elements of landscape diversity that often result in high biodiversity. From the Chippewa delta moving upstream, the site transitions from floodplain forest of silver maple, river birch, ashes, and basswood to a more oak-dominated forest (swamp white, bur, and black).

Participants will see expansive lowland hardwood forests, sloughs of the Chippewa River, and open wet prairies with blooming flowers and grasses exceeding six feet in height. The area also offers excellent birding opportunities. We will take several hikes (1/4 - 1/2 mile each) on unimproved trails, over uneven terrain to visit various wetland and prairie habitats. Bring lots of water and a bag lunch for a picnic stop. We also recommend binoculars, rain gear, long sleeves, long pants, sun hat, and sturdy shoes that can get wet.

Click here to view a video about train trips into the Tiffany Wildife Area.

Details: Trip will run in light rain. If an absolute downpour, departure time will be delayed to see if the rain subsides. We will NOT run if there is lightning or an electrical storm approaching. If storms pass, then we will resume the trip. Please come prepared with rain gear, umbrellas, boots, plastic bags, etc. or anything that will enhance your comfort in the event of rain. Durand, Wisconsin is the nearest town for lodging near the Tiffany Wildlife Area.

Directions: Durand is ~15 miles northeast of the Mississippi River in Pepin County (~3.5 hours/200 miles from Madison and ~45 minutes/30 miles from Eau Claire). From Durand, take State Highway 25 south; you will notice that Hwy. 25 parallels an old railroad track. Approximately 4 miles south of Durand, Thibodeau Road "T's" with Hwy. 25 on the east (left) side of Hwy. 25. You will be directed to park on the east (left) side of Hwy. 25, north of Thibodeau Road on private property. If you see a dozen or so railroad cars "in storage" along a track, ~200 feet to the west of the road, you have gone too far. Click here for a map



Horicon Marsh Wildlife Hike
Dodge County
Saturday, October 1, 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Field Trip Leaders: Horicon Marsh National Wildlife Refuge staff
With the
Horicon Marsh National Wildlife Refuge.
Free and open to the public. To register, contact WWA at 608-250-9971 or by email at register[at]wisconsinwetlands.org
Family Friendly Trip!

Join WWA and the Horicon Marsh National Wildlife Refuge staff on a hike through the lovely Horicon Marsh, a Wetland Gem. Horicon Marsh was also designated a Ramsar Wetland of International Importance. Many animals call Horicon marsh home; examine their pelts and animal artifacts, and then take a short hike to learn wildlife observation skills.

Details: One mile of easy walking.

Directions: The Refuge visitor center address is W4279 Headquarters Road in Mayville, but meet at the Egret Trail boardwalk parking lot off of the refuge auto tour route off Hwy. 49. Click here for driving directions.

Birding Old (Horicon) Marsh Road
Dodge County
Saturday, October 22, 9:00 AM - 10:30 AM
Field Trip Leaders: Horicon Marsh National Wildlife Refuge staff
With the
Horicon Marsh National Wildlife Refuge.
Free and open to the public. To register, contact WWA at 608-250-9971 or by email at register[at]wisconsinwetlands.org
Family Friendly Trip!

Enjoy this guided opportunity to view birds in an area of the Horicon Marsh refuge, a Wetland Gem, that is only open seasonally. Horicon Marsh is a designated Ramsar Wetland of International Importance.

Details: One and a half miles of easy walking. Bring your own binoculars or borrow a pair.

Directions: The Refuge visitor center address is W4279 Headquarters Road in Mayville, but meet at the Egret Trail boardwalk parking lot off of the refuge auto tour route off Hwy. 49. Click here for driving directions.

Swan Watch & Waterfowl Observation Day
Brownsville Overlook in Minnesota
Saturday, November 12, 10:00 AM - 2:00 PM
Field Trip Leaders: Upper Mississippi River National Refuge staff
With the
Upper Mississippi River National Wildlife & Fish Refuge.
Free and open to the public. To register, contact WWA at 608-250-9971 or by email at register[at]wisconsinwetlands.org
Family Friendly Trip!

Visit the Upper Mississippi & Trempealeau River Refuges Wetland Gem. The Brownsville Overlook (MN) is one of the best places along the Mississippi River to view hundreds of migrating tundra swans, and diving and puddle ducks in the fall. The Upper Mississippi River Wetlands has been designated a Ramsar Wetland of International Importance.

Details: Refuge staff will be available with binoculars, spotting scopes, and bird identification guides for the public to use.

Directions: From La Crosse, Wisconsin, take US-14/US-61 west across the Mississippi River, crossing into Minnesota. Turn left onto MN-16W, and left again on MN-26. The overlook is located about three miles south of Brownsville, MN along Highway 26.


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