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Completed plans
establishing goals and objectives for DNR properties.
Plan reports
monitoring goals and objectives.
Feasibility studies
studying new properties.
Public lands
parks, forests, wildlife, fisheries, natural areas, trails, wild rivers and flowages.
Contact information
For information on the Powell Marsh Wildlife Area, contact:
Michele Woodford
property manager
715-356-5211, ext. 207

Property Master PlansPowell Marsh Wildlife Area

Powell Marsh Wildlife Area lies in western Vilas County, 3 miles south of Manitowish Waters and 10 miles north of Lac du Flambeau. There are 390 acres of private land within the 4,850 acre wildlife area. Powell Marsh Wildlife Area is bounded on three sides by the Northern Highland American Legion State Forest and by the Lac du Flambeau Indian Reservation on the south. Several cranberry producers own land adjacent to the property. The Turtle Flambeau Scenic Waters Area lies about six miles to the west.

tumpeter swans on the Vista Flowage

Trumpeter swans on the Vista Flowage. © Michele Woodford.

Powell Marsh Wildlife Area is primarily an open peatland with several small flowages and small lakes. It encompasses a portion of a 20,000 acre wetland complex mostly owned and managed by the Lac du Flambeau Reservation. About 12,000 acres of the tribally owned lands have leatherleaf bog habitat similar to the wildlife area. While lakes are abundant in the region, large, open peatlands are rare across northern Wisconsin. Without intervention, these peatlands naturally convert to tamarack forest and black spruce muskeg.

Master planning update

The Powell Marsh State Wildlife Area draft plan and Environmental Analysis was available for public review from August 18 through September 9, 2016 and we presented the plan at a public meeting on Monday, August 29 at Manitowish Waters.

During the review period, we received comments from 29 people, in addition to government agency and local government officials. Twenty three people attended the public meeting and eight people offered formal oral testimony. We received written comments at the public meeting, by mail and email. Please see the summary of public comments below.

We are scheduled to present the draft Master Plan to the Natural Resources Board for their review and approval at the December 14, 2016 meeting in Madison. We updated the plan to reflect comments received during the public review period. The updated version (DNR PUB-LF-099 September 2016) is posted below. Please visit the Natural Resources Board web page for additional information including the meeting agenda and public participation guidelines.

Thank you for your interest in the Powell Marsh State Wildlife Area and its future management. We welcome your continued involvement as you enjoy the natural resource benefits this property provides.

Preliminary vision and goals

Preliminary vision statement:

The Powell Marsh Wildlife Area is an expansive, open wetland ecosystem that supports a wide variety of plant and animal species, particularly waterfowl. The property provides hunting, trapping, bird watching, other compatible recreational pursuits and educational opportunities. The area's natural, cultural and historical resources are managed and enhanced with the cooperation of tribal governments and adjacent landowners.

Preliminary goal statements:

  • Provide a large area of high quality open wetland habitats for migratory and resident birds, semi-aquatic furbearers and other wildlife. Protect wildlife Species of Greatest Conservation Need and enhance their habitats whenever possible.
  • Maintain and enhance hunting, trapping, wildlife viewing and other compatible recreational opportunities and public access within the physical capabilities of the property. Provide opportunities for natural history and environmental interpretation and education.
  • Assure the Powell Marsh Wildlife Area waters and the water flowing from the property are of good quality and meet aesthetic water quality standards.
Planning documents

See the maps under the "maps" section.

Master Plan

Powell Marsh State Wildlife Area Master Plan and Environmental Analysis (draft) [PDF]
DNR PUB-LF-099 September 2016

Public meeting

Regional and Property Analysis

Regional & Property Analysis: Powell Marsh Wildlife Area [PDF]
DNR PUB-LF-074 2015

Charrette Alternative Management Plan

Powell Marsh State Wildlife Area Charrette Alternative Management Plan [PDF]

Recordings of the Charrette design workshop are available upon request.


See the draft Master Plan and Regional and Property Analysis under the "planning documents" section.

Master Plan

Powell Marsh State Wildlife Area Master Plan and Environmental Analysis (draft)
DNR PUB-LF-099 September 2016

Regional and Property Analysis

Regional & Property Analysis: Powell Marsh Wildlife Area
DNR PUB-LF-074 2015


Your comments are important so please consider coming to meetings, mailing in comments or calling us. We welcome your feedback on the property management goals and master planning issues throughout the process.

For questions or to send written and email comments:

Michele Woodford, property manager
DNR Service Center
8770 Highway J
Woodruff WI 54568
715-356-5211, ext. 207

For print copies of documents or comment forms:

Bob Dall, state forest associate
DNR Service Center
107 Sutliff Ave.
Rhinelander WI 54501

Last revised: Friday July 14 2017