Wisconsin Important Bird Areas

Conserving the most important places for birds

Lower Kickapoo River

Site Description

This site encompasses the final few miles of the Kickapoo River to its confluence with the Wisconsin, and includes both the Bell Center and Wauzeka units of the Kickapoo River State Wildlife Area as well as the Hogback Prairie and Wauzeka Bottoms State Natural Areas.  It has some of the most intact forestland in the Driftless Area, including both upland and floodplain forest.  There also are significant areas of oak savanna and prairie, particularly at the Hogback Prairie State Natural Area which contains extensive dry and dry-mesic prairie covering a 300-foot-high steep, limestone-capped ridge.

Ornithological Importance

Eastern wood-pewees, Acadian flycatchers, willow flycatchers, wood thrushes, blue-winged warblers, cerulean warblers, ovenbirds, worm-eating warblers, mourning warblers, rose-breasted grosbeaks, and field sparrows all breed here. Thousands of migrating landbirds use the area in both spring and fall.

Lower Kickapoo River, photo by WDNR

Lower Kickapoo River, photo by WDNR