Rush Lake features three wetland parcels scattered about the south and east sides of Rush Lake in southwestern Winnebago County. Sedge meadow, wet prairie, shrubb-carr, and cattails provide a wetland habitat millieux for a variety of birds and waterfowl. The northeastern parcel is accessible from Mountain Road, east of CTH M and the central parcel is accessible from Island Road, 3/4 miles to the southwest. The southwestern parcel has no publicly accessible overland access. A boat launch is located off of CTH M near the northeast corner of the lake which would require an appoximately 4 mile paddle. SNA’s are often named after lakes. In those cases, they often contain at least a portion of the lake. This is not one of those caes.
Rush Lake was formerly owned by The Nature Conservancy who transferred the property to the DNR in 2012. I visited the northeastern parcel of the natural area and was greeted by a sea of invasive reed canary grass (Phragmites australis). This species forms dense clones that crowd out native vegetation and distrub the natural hydrology of the area. It is very difficult to get rid of and despite this, I hope that some management activities have commenced since or this would seem to be a candidate to be delisted in the future. I would like to return to see if anything is being done at this site in that respect and perhaps I would follow the stream/canal near the northern edge of the site which may prove an easier route toward the lake.
More of my photos (and full-res) from Rush Lake can be viewed here.
|Natural Communities / Geology||Southern Sedge Meadow, Wet Prairie, Shrub-Carr, Lake|
|Easy to Find||Yes|
|Best Seen By||Foot/Boat|
|Ownership||Wisconsin DNR; More info: The Nature Conservancy|