GeeseonLake.jpgWildlife & Habitats 

Walk through a mosaic of habitat types common to central Wisconsin.
Stroll between waves of cattails blowing in the breeze on one of many boardwalks that keep you above the marsh.
Relax beneath whispering white pine trees, once the "green gold" of early settlers. Enjoy the brilliant colors of the prairie in bloom.
Sit on a rustic bench beneath towering 100-year-old trees in the Berard Oaks, a 4-acre restored oak savanna.    

Wildlife abounds in the Reserve year-round.

The deer population is healthy, attracting visitors from miles around. While walking the trails, you have a good chance of seeing a doe grazing, a fawn playing, or a buck displaying its antlers. Squirrels (gray, fox, and red) chase each other in the oak forest canopy, while foxes and weasels hunt stealthily on the forest floor. In the evening, flying squirrels glide through the air; Schmeeckle is one of the few sites where both northern and southern species live side-by-side.

In spring and early summer, listen for the ringing chorus of frogs as spring peepers, chorus frogs, green frogs, gray treefrogs, wood frogs, and toads sing for mates. A rainbow of butterflies frequent the prairie flowers. Toward dusk, male woodcocks "peent" and take to the sky for a dramatic and ceremonious dance.

The 24-acre Lake Joanis in the southeastern corner of the Reserve is a perfect place for fishing, canoeing, wildlife watching, photographing, or just plain relaxing. In the fall, hundreds of geese use the lake as a stopover during their migration. Fog rising from the lake in the early morning is an alluring mysterious side of the Reserve.