Goose Pond Fish and Wildlife Area has undergone significant restoration work over the past few years. The area was taken from agricultural usage and restored to significant (and rare) continuous native prairie and marsh habitat for migrating waterfowl, shorebirds, marsh birds and songbirds. Indiana prairie and wetlands, once plentiful in the area, have suffered extreme loss mostly due to agricultural practices.
DU and its partners funded the acquisition of 8,000 acres, many of which were restored by the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service under the Wetlands Restoration Program in 2008, with DU providing engineering services. Several projects have been completed since the original phase, including the restoration of 298 acres of bottomland forest, the enhancement of 58 wetland acres and a recently completed 200-acre wetland restoration in partnership with the Indiana Department of Natural Resources, National Wild Turkey Federation and Duke Energy. Through the CropLife America program, DU and IDNR also enhanced an additional 697 acres of previously restored wetlands.
Goose Pond protects public access to a huge expanse of natural wetlands. It provides hunting opportunities for upland game, waterfowl, deer and dove. It is a significant birding destination in Indiana, and has achieved an enviable diversity of species since its restoration, many of which are state and federally endangered. Goose Pond is also the site of the annual Marsh Madness, a festival surrounding the migration of waterfowl and sandhill cranes.
This project was funded in part by a North American Wetlands Conservation Act (NAWCA) grant.
Partners: Indiana Department of Natural Resources, The Nature Conservancy, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, National Wild Turkey Federation, Duke Energy, Linton-Stockton Chamber of Commerce, Pheasants Forever, Indiana Sportsman Roundtable, Indiana Bowhunters Association, Sycamore Land Trust, Indiana Wildlife Federation, Indiana Deer Hunters Association and Ducks Unlimited