Star Prairie Waterfowl Production Area
Area: 307 Acres
Hiking Difficulty: B
This 307 acre parcel of land in Stanton, Wisconsin was owned by the Irle Family for six generations. Throughout this time it was used primarily as pasture, but was also very popular for Mallard hunting and muskrat trapping. Natural springs in the area were the source of a constant water supply for cattle even during very dry years. This area was purchased by the USFWS with federal Duck Stamp dollars. The habitat goal for this WPA is to maintain a prairie wetland complex similar to what the first settlers found when they arrived in west central Wisconsin.
Birds of Interest: Barred Owl, American Bittern, Black Tern, Blue-winged Teal, Bobolink, Brown Thrasher, Canada Goose, Common Yellowthroat, Downy Woodpecker, Eastern Kingbird, Gray Catbird, Great Blue Heron, Great Egret, Green Heron, Green-winged Teal, Hairy Woodpecker, Mallard, Meadowlark, Mourning Dove, Northern Harrier, Northern Shoveler, Red-Winged Blackbird, Sandhill Crane, Tree Swallow, Trumpeter Swan, Clay-colored, Field, Grasshopper, and Henslow’s Sparrows.
• The combination of prairie, oak savanna, and wetlands makes Star Prairie WPA stand out for its diverse habitat and wildlife
• Many migratory birds return to this site year after year to nest and rear their young
• Several wetlands within the northern area of the WPA have been designated as Trumpeter Swan Nesting Areas; follow the safety guidelines posted to protect both yourself and the swans
• If you venture west of Star Prairie WPA, you will find Saratoga Park, an area that provides stunning walking areas that cross beautiful spring creeks
Directions: In the village of Star Prairie, turn east onto 235th Ave (Saratoga Ave). The WPA begins at the village limits and is found on both sides of the road.