Bear Bluff Peatlands


Bear Bluff Meadow, photo by Andy Paulios

Site Description

This area of bogs and flowages sits at the center of the former Glacial Lake Wisconsin and encompasses portions of Wood County and Meadow Valley State Wildlife Areas. The site contains a variety of wetland habitats including alder thicket, muskeg, open bog, conifer wetlands, sedge meadow, and deep marsh. The uplands are forested with aspen, maple, and oak. Also present are smaller patches of red pine forest, floodplain forest, and mossing meadows.

Bear Bluff Thicket, photo by Eric Epstein

Ornithological Importance

This site contains one of the core breeding areas in the state for golden-winged warbler, with a population estimated in the thousands of pairs. Also breeding are high populations of American bittern, northern harrier, sandhill crane, black-billed cuckoo, sedge wren, and veery. A variety of northern species, such as Blackburnian warbler, northern waterthrush, and Lincoln’s sparrow, also are found here at the southern limit of their ranges in the state. Golden eagles use the area in winter.

Photo Credits: Andy Paulios, Eric Epstein