Cities Journal

Wisconsin Is A Birder’s Paradise


Don’t just stand on the sidelines at Horicon Marsh while migrating birds fly by. Pack your binoculars, rent a canoe and paddle through the largest freshwater cattail marsh in the country.

Follow the 6.5-mile Horicon Marsh Canoe Trail to find yourself in the 33,000-acre wilderness. About 300 bird species are spotted at the marsh, which is also home to great blue herons, redhead ducks, American white pelicans and wild turkeys, among many others.

It’s a spring and fall stop for Canada geese, or you can visit in summertime, when chicks are hatching. Launch that rented canoe early in the morning before high temperatures, and you might see birds caring for their chicks. However, be careful to stay in public areas of the marsh, which was significantly damaged by 19th-century industry.

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