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WELCOME TO LONGWOODS CONSERVATION AREA

MAP/ LOCATION
BACKGROUND AND HISTORY
USES
LONGWOODS INTERPRETIVE TRAIL SYSTEM
IROQUOIAN VILLAGE AND MUSEUM AND NATIVE STUDIES
CONSERVATION EDUCATION PROGRAMS
HABITAT AREAS
Grassland Habitat
Wetland Habitat
Forest Habitat
Aquatic Habitat
VISITING A NATURAL AREA
PDF format of this document
PDF format of the checklists from this document
PDF format of the "visiting a natural area" section in this document

LOCATION
You can find The LONGWOODS Road Conservation Area on LONGWOODS Road. It is located west of the Village of Delaware within Middlesex County.

BACKGROUND AND HISTORY

  • In 1964 the 63 hectare (155 acre) park was acquired by the Lower Thames Valley Conservation Authority (L.T.V.C.A). It was purchased from the Ministry of Transportation and Communications.
  • When visiting LONGWOODS Conservation Area you will be able to visit a variety of ecosystems including: Woodlands, ravines, marshes, streams, and meadows.
  • Much of the wide open grassland areas were worked for agricultural purposes up to the mid-1970's.
  • Included in the 155 acres of Carolinian Forest is the main stream system known as The Mill Stream.

USES
There are many activities offered here at LONGWOODS Conservation Area, including:

  • a day-use picnic area
  • 3 group camping sites
  • a number of log cabins available for indoor use
  • a resource center, educational programming
  • a re-created Iroquoian Village called Ska-Nah-Doht which represents a time of life 800-1,000 years ago
  • 3 re-created log cabins can be found to the northeast of the resource center
  • 5 trails with boardwalks, stairs and bridges
  • an Iroquoian Museum
  • Snowshoe rentals in the winter
  • Cross-country ski trails in the winter
  • Baseball Diamond

PLEASE NOTE THAT THE LONGWOODS CONSERVATION AREA PRACTICES NO TRACE FIELD TRIPPING .

  • No trace Field tripping includes a litterless lunch policy.
  • Teachers are responsible for removing their classrooms garbage. As well, there are no garbage bins on site; so bring your own garbage bags!
  • This process helps to reduce the environmental impact visitors have on the area.

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LONGWOODS INTERPRETIVE TRAIL SYSTEM

There are 6.5 kilometers of trails within the conservation area. Two of these trails are wheelchair accessible:

  • The Longhorn trail
  • The Muncey trail

There are three trails where you can experience the forest habitat. The Turtle Trail is bordered by a ravine, and winds through a mixed deciduous woodlot. The Longhorn Trail starts in deciduous forest and ends at a picnic area. The Potawatomie Trail tours scrub land and mature forest.
On The Muncey Trail and The Copycat Trail there are both forest and wetland habitats for you to enjoy!

THE IROQUOIAN VILLAGE AND MUSEUM

Ska-Nah-Doht is a recreated Iroquoian Village that was opened in 1973. The name Ska-Nah-Doht comes from the Onyotaa-ka language and means a village stands again. The Village is based on data that was collected and knowledge acquired from the First Nations People. Located inside the museum are beautiful artifacts recovered from the Kelly and Yaworski sites located in the area.

  • Special events that are held at the LONGWOODS Village and Museum include:
  • The battle of LONGWOODS: May 1st weekend
  • Night Walk with the Spirits: 3rd Saturday in August
  • Hike-a-thon: 1st Sunday in October
  • A Taste of Fall at Ska-Nah-Doht: 3rd Sunday in October

    FOR EVENT INFORMATION CALL 519-264-2420
    NATIVE STUDIES

    Native studies and conservation programs are available to schools and other groups
    There are many educational activities found here at the village which provide hands-on outdoor experience for the students. Each program demonstrates the life of the Iroquois. In addition to the various education programs found here, you have the opportunity to explore museum displays and games.
    The possibilities are endless:

Half Day Programs 11/2-2 hours long
$5.00 per student or $75.00 per class

Full Day Programs 4-5 hours long
$10.00 per student or $150 per class

*PRICES ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGE

45 minute workshops: 1. Iroquoian Pottery
2. Traditional Games
3. Tool Making
4. Builder, Gatherer, Medicine Man
90 minute workshops: 1. Hunting Simulation Game
2. Trade Routes Simulation Game
3. Snowshoeing
4. Customized workshop

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CONSERVATION EDUCATION PROGRAMS

The goal of LONGWOODS Conservation Area is to provide students with an awareness and a better understanding of the natural world around them. This is achieved by offering the students a wide variety of educational programs. The choices range from field trips to classroom activities.

FIELD TRIPS

LONGWOODS offers a variety of activity- based field trips for the students.
Grades JK-3

  • Autumn Animal Amble/Fur and Feathers
  • Seed and Nut Search/Leaf and Petal Hike
  • Winged Wonders
  • Winter Woodland Walk

Grades 4-8

  • Bugs Abound
  • Wetlands
  • Predator-prey game/Snowbound
  • Orienteering
  • Eco-activities
  • Wildlife Eco-trail
  • Soil Ecology
  • Forest Ecology
  • Snowshoeing

CLASSROOM CONSERVATION PROGRAMS

LONGWOODS Conservation Area also offers teachers an opportunity to have staff come to the school for classroom conservation programs. These programs are offered seasonally and are directly related to the Ontario Curriculum.

ELEMENTARY SCHOOL CLASSROOM PROGRAMS
Birds Through the Seasons
Food Chains and Webs
Exploring Conservation
Wildlife Management

SECONDARY SCHOOL CLASSROOM PROGRAMS
Acid Rain
Aquatic Ecosystem
Orienteering
Forestry
Water Conservation and the Hydrologic Cycle
The Indian/McGregor Creek Flood Control Project
Birds in the Environment

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LONGWOODS HABITAT

Longwoods Road Conservation Area, located 6.5 km west of Delaware on Hwy 2 (Longwoods Rd.), is a 63 hectare area consisting of extensive Carolinian zone woodlands, ravines, a marsh wetland, streams and grassland. The 6 km of walking or cross country ski trails throughout the area provide ample access to the various habitats Longwoods offer. This area is an excellent setting to learn about and experience the habitats within Southwestern Ontario.

GRASSLAND HABITAT
Grasslands are open areas where few or no trees grow. A true grassland is sometimes called a prairie. A prairie is a long-lived grassland that is dominated by native grasses. In comparison, the grasses that you may see growing along the side of the road are called meadows, they are not true prairies or grasslands.
A meadow is an open, treeless area covered by grasses and is usually the result of a disturbance. Meadows are the first stage of forest regeneration. These areas have hundreds of different species of grasses and wildflowers.
Grasses make up between 50-75% of all plants found in tall grass prairies. The most common grasses found within a Tall grass Prairie includes: Big Bluestem, Little Bluestem, Indian Grass and Switch grass. Some plants that can be found within this habitat include Wild Lupine, Gray-headed Coneflower, Prairie Smoke, Wild Bergamot, Butterfly Milkweed, Blazing Asters, Goldenrods and Sunflowers.
Before European Settlement tall grass prairies were abundant in Southern Ontario. Now, they are endangered. Less than 3% of the original tall grass prairies still exist in Ontario today. The prairies were converted into agricultural fields and pastures. However, restoration projects are underway in Southern Ontario to help save the prairie.
Unfortunately, along with the loss of habitat comes the loss of species. Of the plant species considered rare in Ontario, approximately 20% are associated with prairie ecosystems.
The open fields within Longwoods Conservation Area consist of gently sloping, wide open area. In the past these areas were farmed for corn and tobacco and the area near the park entrance was once a sodded clearing.

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LIFE IN A GRASSLAND
Here are some species you might find in a grassland habitat:

BIRDS

Red-tailed Hawk
Brown-headed Cowbird
Killdeer
Field Sparrow
Rock Dove������
Barn Owl *at risk

Eastern Meadowlark
Barn Swallow
Turkey Vulture
Song Sparrow
Short-eared Owl *at risk����
Eastern Bluebird

American Goldfinch
Pheasant
Northern Harrier
American Kestrel
�Loggerhead Shrike� *at risk
 

Wild Turkey
Bobolink
Horned Lark
Snow Bunting
Northern Bobwhite *at risk����
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MAMMALS

Deer Mouse
Field Mouse
Short-tailed Shrew
Common Shrew

Eastern Cottontail Rabbit
Red Fox
Smoky Shrew
 

Meadow Vole
White-tailed Deer
Skunk��
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Groundhog
Star-nosed Mole
�American Badger *at risk�����
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INSECTS

Dragonflies
Crickets
Preying Mantis
Various Species of Flies
�Various Species of� Spiders (not insects)����
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Damselflies
Grasshoppers
Ants
Bees and Wasps
Ladybird Beetles
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 Monarch Butterfly
 Tiger Swallowtail Butterfly
 Great Spangled Fritillary Butterfly
 Red Admiral�����
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American Painted Lady Butterfly
Cabbage White Butterfly
 Summer Azure����
 Clouded Sulpher�����
 �Orange Sulpher������
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REPTILES

Eastern Garter Snake
Eastern Milk Snake
 

Eastern Hognose Snake
Fox Snake *at risk
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Smooth Green Snake
Eastern Ribbon Snake

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PLANTS

Tall Fescue
  Big Bluestem
  Little Bluestem
  Indian Grass
  Red Fescue
  Canada Wild Rye
  Switch Grass
  Wool Grass
  Quack/Twitch
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  Canada Tick- Trefoil
  Black-eyed Susan
  New England Aster
  Virginia Mountain Mint
  Blazingstar
  New Jersey Tea
  Tall Sunflower
  Canada Thistle
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  Goldenrod
  Wild Bergamot
  Gray-headed Coneflower
  Purple Coneflower
  Prairie Dock
  Smooth Beardtongue
  Common Dandelion
  Joe-Pye-Weed
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Wild Carrot
Common Milkweed
Swamp Milkweed
Butterfly Weed
Common Plantain
Meadowrue
Common Burdock
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WETLAND HABITAT

Wetland Area in Longwoods
A wetland area is located in the stream valley at the fork of the Mill Stream and the Iroquois Village. Pussy willows, common cattail, white willow, sandbar willow, sensitive fern, northern maidenhair fern, christmas fern, meadow fescue, kentucky blue grass, honeysuckle, roundleaf dogwood, bebbs sedge, slender sedge and sallow sedge can all be found here.
A marsh area covers much of the wide section of stream with lush vegetation in the areas built up with sediment. Wetlands are located on poorly drained lands which have wet to flooded soil conditions for a part of the year. In May the area was flooded 4-6 cm, while in June the surface water had disappeared in the centre. The ground did remain soft and spongy, mainly due to the thick layers of humus (a dark brown mass of partly decomposed organic matter in the soil).

Wetlands
A wetland is an area that has standing water at or near the surface for most of the year. Wetlands may be located along shorelines and riverbanks or can often be found in isolated depressions or hollows. Wetlands are very important within nature for the following reasons:
A. Wetlands provide habitat (food, water, shelter and space) for mammals, reptiles, amphibians and many bird species.
B. Wetlands act like a giant sponge, holding water which reduces flooding.
C. Wetlands release water slowly, supplying water to other communities.
D. Wetlands help to control erosion.
E. Wetlands act like water filters.

There are four types of wetlands found in Ontario; marshes, swamps, bogs and fens.

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MARSHES
These are found along the edges of rivers, streams, ponds and lakes. They support many plants that are rooted in the soil and grow out of the water called emergent plants. Cattails and Arrowheads are two examples of emergent plants. Marshes receive their water from the body of water next to them, groundwater, rain or snow. As a result of this the water levels can vary from a few centimetres up to two metres.

SWAMPS
Swamps can be either isolated or found along rivers, streams and lakes. They are formed as a result of flooding during the spring snowmelt. They are covered with water for most of the year, although they do not flood as deeply as marshes and can dry up during periods of drought.
Some of the trees that can be seen in a swamp include Eastern White Cedar, Balsam Poplar, Red Maple, Silver Maple, Black Ash, Tamarack and Spruce. A variety of shrubs are located here: Alder, Willow, Button Bush, Winterberry and Dogwood. The ground is carpeted with mosses, ferns and wildflowers including Marsh Marigold, Skunk Cabbage and Orchids.

BOGS
Bogs are commonly found in the northern parts of the province. They are located in deep, bowl-like depressions and are filled with layers of peat (slowly decaying plant material). The water becomes covered with floating and decaying vegetation. The dominant vegetation here is sphagnum moss. Some tree species found here are Black Spruce, Tamarack and White Cedar. Plants include Leatherleaf, Labrador Tea, Bog Rosemary, Blueberries, Cranberries, Three-leaved-Solomons Seal, Sundew and Pitcher Plants.

FENS
These are areas that are usually located in low-lying areas of Northern Ontario. Within Fens water slowly flows in and out of the peat layers. However, fens may dry up in the warmer months. They are one of the most interesting wildflower and insect habitats and are a great place to find Orchids and other rare plants.
Fens are dominated by grasses, rushes, and sedges. Other plant life consists of: Horsetails, Brown Moss, Tamarack, Black Spruce and Birch. Wildlife within a Fen can include shrews, mice, voles, lemmings, coyote, muskrat, raccoon, beaver and weasels.

LIFE IN A WETLAND
Here are some species that might be found in a wetland habitat:

BIRDS

Tundra Swan
Canada Goose
Mallard Duck
American Black Duck
Wood Duck
Hooded Merganser
Gadwell
Northern Shoveler
Red-winged Blackbird
Sandhill Crane
 

Greater &Lesser Scaup
Common Goldeneye
Bufflehead
Green-winged Teal
Pied-bill Grebe
Horned Grebe
American Bittern
Northern Harrier
Least Bittern
Snow Goose�

Green Heron
Great Blue Heron
Great Egret
Solitary Sandpiper
Common Moorhen
American Coot
Greater &Lesser Yellow Legs
Wilson Phalarope
Spotted Sandpiper
 

Pectoral Sandpiper
Dowitchers
Common Snipe
Belted Kingfisher
Killdeer
Virginia Rail
Yellow Rail
Sora Rail
Marsh Wren
Sedge Wren
Marsh Hawk
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MAMMALS

Beaver
Mink
Red Fox
Weasel
Coyote
Raccoon

Various Mole Species
Various Vole Species
Various Shrew Species

Skunk
Grey Squirrel
Opossum
White-tailed Deer
Muskrat

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AMPHIBIANS AND

REPTILES

American Toad
Green Frog
Spring Peeper
Wood Frog
Bull Frog
Pickerel Frog��
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Mudpuppy
Red Spotted Newt
Blue Spotted Salamander
Red-backed Salamander
Four-Toed Salamander
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Snapping Turtle
Map Turtle
Painted Turtle
Blandings Turtle
Spotted Turtle
Five-lined Skink
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Eastern Garter Snake
Eastern Milk Snake
Ribbon Snake
Eastern Hognose Snake
Smooth Green Snake
Black Rat Snake
Brown Snake

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INSECTS

Dragonflies
Damselflies
Mayfly Nymph�
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Mosquito
Various Species of Flies����
 

Various Species of Bees and Wasps��
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PLANTS

Cattail
Bulrush
Various Sedge Species
Various Grass Species
Pond Weed
Swamp Milkweed
Jewelweed���
 

Waterfoil
Pickerel Weed
Arrowhead
Blue Flag
Smartweed
Marsh Marigold
Dense Blazingstar
Skunk Cabbage
Sensitive Fern
Northern Maidenhair Fern
Christmas Fern

Choke Cherry
Crab Apple
Hawthorns
Autumn Olive
Red-Osier Dogwood
Pussywillow�����
�Honeysuckle��
Roundleaf Dogwood���
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White Birch
White Elm
White Ash
White Cedar
Trembling Aspen
Red Maple
Silver Maple
Ironwood
Poplar�����
White Willow
Sandbar Willow
 

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FOREST HABITAT

Longwoods Conservation Area has extensive Carolinian woodlands. There are also two plantations within the conservation area. The first is the Conifer Plantation. This plantation is located in the center of the park near the resource center. Conifer species such as European Larch, Scotch, Jack, White and Red Pine and Spruce can be found here. The second is the Deciduous/coniferous plantation located near the cedar swamp in the northwest area.
Woodland areas are important habitat for a variety of species including birds, reptiles, insects, amphibians and mammals. A habitat is where plants and animals live; it is their home. These homes in the forest can be large old hollow trees known as den trees, or standing dead trees called snag trees. These trees are very important within the forest ecosystem because animals like raccoons and flying squirrels make their nest in den trees, while birds like woodpeckers nest in snag trees.
Many nut producing trees such as oak, beech and hickory supply food for the woodland creatures. These trees are called mast trees. Without these trees in the forest the animals would either starve or move to another forest that contained these trees.
Conifer trees (have cones) or evergreens are important because they are used as shelter and cover from the snow, wind and rain by many forest animals. Conifer tree seeds can be found in cones.
Even dead trees have a place in the forest since all of the dead logs and leaves on the forest floor provide habitat for insects and amphibians, which in turn are food for other animals.

THE CAROLINIAN FOREST LIFEZONE
Carolinian Canada is one of Canadas most significant landscapes. Often known as the banana belt, this area supports an amazing diversity of wildlife and natural habitats. The area has a relatively warm climate, providing suitable habitat for many species which are not found anywhere else in Canada. The area has the warmest average temperatures and the longest frost-free seasons in Ontario. This results in relatively mild winters compared to the rest of Ontario. The Carolinian forest reaches its northern most limit in Southern Ontario.
Much of Ontarios rare and endangered species can be found nestled away in the last remaining acres of the Carolinian Forest. Species that can be seen here include trees such as Sassafras, the Tulip Tree, Blue Ash, Flowering Dogwood, Chestnut, Hop Tree, Paw Paw, Black Gum, Cucumber Tree and the Kentucky Coffee Tree. The Green Dragon, the Creeping Fragile Fern, Swamp Rose Mallow, Lizards Tail, Yellow Mandarin, Virginia Bluebells and Oswego Tea are a few of Canadas rare plants existing now only within the Carolinian Zone. Bird species, such as, the Acadian Flycatcher, Summer Tanager, Carolina Wren and the Prothonotary Warbler can be found here. Some mammals are restricted to this area, these include the Badger, Eastern Mole, the Southern Flying Squirrel and the Opossum.
Unfortunately this life zone is one of the most threatened landscapes in Ontario, covering less than 1% of Canada, but yet it is home to more rare plants and animals than any other region in the country. This is mainly because the species found here are at the northern most point of their habitat. As well, these species live in developed and settled landscapes, resulting in a minimum amount of habitat remaining. It is found within an extremely busy corridor between Windsor and Toronto. Urbanization, agriculture and industry have destroyed a large portion of this beautiful forest. Because of this the Canadian Carolinian Forest has been a focus for conservation and stewardship.
If you would like to learn more about the Carolinian Life Zone, or have any questions please do not hesitate to contact:

CAROLINIAN CANADA
TELE: 519-873-4631
www.carolinian.org

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LIFE IN A FOREST

BIRDS

American Woodcock
Downy Woodpecker
Eastern Kingbird
Chickadee
American Crow
Cedar Waxwing
American Goldfinch
Various Sparrow species

Eastern Screech Owl
Hairy Woodpecker �Purple Martin
�Junco
Nuthatch
European Starling
Common Grackle
Various Warbler species

Great Horned Owl
Pileated Woodpecker
Blue Jay
American Robin
Wood Thrush
Ruffed Grouse
Rose-breasted� Grosbeak

Mourning Dove
Flicker
Cardinal
Gray Catbird
 �Wild Turkey
Red-tailed Hawk

MAMMALS

Eastern Cottontail Rabbit
Various Bat species
Red Fox

Raccoon
Gray Squirrel
Coyote
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White-tailed Deer
Red Squirrel
Opossum
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Skunk
Groundhog
American Badger
 

AMPHIBIANS AND REPTILES

American Toad
Wood Frog
Tree Frog
 

Eastern Redback������� Salamander
Blue-spotted Salamander

Milk Snake
�Little Brown Snake
 

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INSECTS

Mosquitoes
Yellow Jackets

Ants
Termites

Millipedes
Wasps


Centipedes

PLANTS

May-apple
Bloodroot
Jack-in-the-Pulpit
Canada Anemone
Trout Lily
Wild Columbine
Canada Violet
Solomon�s Seal
Wild Bergamot
White Trillium
Red Trillium
�False Solomon�s Seal�
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Ostrich Fern
Christmas Fern
Maidenhair Fern
Lady�s Fern
Poison Ivy
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Honeysuckle
Witch Hazel
Common Elder
Hawthorn
Wild Grape
Spicebush
Nannyberry
Serviceberry
Staghorn Sumac��
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Sugar Maple
Silver Maple
Red Maple
Red Oak
White Oak
Black Cherry
White Ash
Black Ash
Bitternut Hickory
Shagbark Hickory
Eastern Cottonwood
Black Walnut
American Beech
Trembling Aspen
White Birch
White Cedar
Ironwood
White Elm
Basswood
Eastern White Pine
Blue Beech
Tulip
Hackberry
 

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AQUATIC HABITAT
Aquatic habitats are areas containing permanent water. Ponds, rivers, and lakes are examples of aquatic habitat. Animals such as turtles can be seen basking on logs, frogs can be heard communicating with each other, toads can be seen hopping away, salamanders hiding, birds flying overhead, beaver busily building, muskrats swimming by and much more!
Aquatic habitats provide a home for many different species of plants, insects, birds and mammals. These areas supply much food and water for wildlife. Many mammals come to drink from the aquatic habitat. Some may be looking for food. Next to aquatic systems you can often find wetland vegetation species. Some examples are cattails, reeds, grasses, willows and dogwood

BIRDS

Common Loon
Canada Goose
Mallard Duck
Hooded Merganser
American Pipit
Cliff Swallow
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Double �crested Cormorant
Spotted Sandpiper
Red-winged Blackbird
Northern Pintail
Great Blue Heron
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American Black Duck
Bank Swallow
Wood Duck
Brown-headed Cowbird
Ring-necked Duck
Green Heron
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Killdeer
Belted Kingfisher
Herring Gull
Ring-billed Gull
Ruddy Duck
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FISH

Common Carp
Catfish
Walleye
Rainbow Trout
Shiners��
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Minnow
Sunfish
Brown Trout
Brook Trout
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Johnny Darter
Crappy
Chub
 
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Bass
Pike
Rock Bass
Perch
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AMPHIBIANS AND

REPTILES

Pickerel Frog
American Toad
Spring Peeper
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Bull Frog
Green Frog
Gray Treefrog
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Snapping Turtle
Painted Turtle
Map Turtle
Blandings Turtle
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Mudpuppy
�Northern Water Snake����
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INSECTS

Dragonflies
Damselflies
Mayfly Nymph��
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Water Strider
Mosquito
Water Beetle
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Water Spider
Water Boatman
Water Strider��
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PLANTS

Yellow Water Lily
Common Duckweed
Water Milfoil
Cattails
Water Plantain
Algae
 

Blue Flag
Bulrush
Bladderwort
Arrowhead
Reeds
Bugleweed
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Black Ash
Blue Beech
Various species of
Willows

Silver Maple
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Bur Oak
Large-toothed Aspen
Red Maple
Sycamore
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*Many mammals use the aquatic habitat for water, food and shelter. Beaver, muskrats, mink, opossums, and raccoons are some of the mammals you might see in or near an aquatic area. Very often you will be able to find their tracks.

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VISITING A NATURAL AREA

DRESS APPROPRIATELY

You want to enjoy your nature experience

  • long sleeves
  • long pants
  • a hat
  • shoes and socks
  • sun screen and bug spray
RESPECT THE AREA


Many species make this area their home

  • don�t litter

  • take only pictures

  • don�t disturb anything

  • don�t pick flowers

  • if you observe something place it back where you found it
STAY ON TRAILS


�You could trample wildlife and plants

  • �don�t damage vegetation

  • don�t disturb dead wood, it is decaying

  • stay away from leaflets three, it is poison ivy

  • minimize human impact on the area
ENJOY YOUR VISIT!


Your natural area is important to you

  • the quieter you are, the more you will see

  • leave everything in its natural setting

  • come back and visit again

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