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Wisconsin State Natural Areas Program Chub Lake Oak Savanna (No. 607)



Within Mud Lake Wildlife Area, Dodge County. T9N-R13E, Section 25. 21 acres.



Chub Lake Oak Savanna features a small, 21-acre savanna located on the south shore of Chub Lake. Large oaks dominate with bur, white, and red oaks along with shagbark hickory. Oaks have regenerated successfully at this site which has resulted in a more closed canopy and the resulting shade may have eliminated many of the native forbs and grasses. Thinning of trees along with prescribed burning and reseeding of locally collected native groundlayer species will help restore the integrity of this site. Although this is a relatively small site, it is restorable, easily accessible, and offers a good opportunity for educational outreach on the imperiled nature of oak savanna ecosystems, which are globally rare today. Chub Lake Oak Savanna is owned by the DNR and was designated a State Natural Area in 2010.


Driving directions

From Hubbleton, go west on Highway 19 0.4 miles, then north and west on Hubbleton Road 1.7 miles to a small parking area north of the road.


Chub Lake Oak Savanna is owned by:

  • WDNR


The DNR's state natural areas program is comprised of lands owned by the state, private conservation organizations, municipalities, other governmental agencies, educational institutions and private individuals. While the majority of SNAs are open to the public, access may vary according to individual ownership policies. Public use restrictions may apply due to public safety, or to protect endangered or threatened species or unique natural features. Lands may be temporarily closed due to specific management activities. Users are encouraged to contact the landowner for more specific details.

The data shown on these maps have been obtained from various sources, and are of varying age, reliability, and resolution. The data may contain errors or omissions and should not be interpreted as a legal representation of legal ownership boundaries.


Site objectives

Restore and maintain the oak savanna community. Natural processes and prescribed fire will determine the structure of the site's natural communities.

Management approach

The ecological characteristics of the site will be primarily shaped by an intensive fire management program. The native dominant savanna tree species (primarily oaks) form the basis for an oak savanna restoration. Some thinning of the canopy, understory manipulation and shrub control via harvest, brushing or fire may be needed to mimic natural disturbance patterns. Augmentation of the ground layer will only add species that historically would have been found on the site, using seeds or plugs from local genetic material; this usually occurs in the early stages of restoration. Other allowable activities throughout the site include control of invasive plants and animals, augmentation of native prairie species after careful review, maintenance of existing facilities, and access to suppress wildfires. Salvage of trees after a major wind event can occur if the volume of woody material inhibits fire prescriptions.

Site-specific considerations

  • This site offers an excellent opportunity to showcase and educate about savanna restoration since it contains large, open grown oaks and affords easy access.


Management objectives and prescriptions

  • Remove black cherry, honeysuckle, gray dogwood, prickly ash, and many of the smaller oaks leaving replacement oak trees.
  • Use herbicides, if necessary, to control unwanted species.
  • Conduct prescribed burns in the fall. Follow with hand broadcasting of native, local genotype forbs and grasses. Conduct spring burns after the groundlayer is restored.


Very few State Natural Areas have public facilities, but nearly all are open for a variety of recreational activities as indicated below. Generally, there are no picnic areas, restrooms, or other developments. Parking lots or designated parking areas are noted on individual SNA pages and maps. Trails, if present, are typically undesignated footpaths. If a developed trail is present, it will normally be noted on the SNA map and/or under the "Access" tab. A compass and topographic map or a GPS unit are useful tools for exploring larger, isolated SNAs.

Allowable activities

In general, the activities listed below are allowed on all DNR-owned SNA lands. Exceptions to this list of public uses, such as SNAs closed to hunting, are noted under the "Access" tab above and posted with signs on site.

  • Hiking
  • Fishing
  • Cross country skiing
  • Hunting
  • Trapping

Prohibited activities

  • Camping and campfires
  • Collecting of animals (other than legally harvested species), non-edible fungi, rocks, minerals, fossils, archaeological artifacts, soil, downed wood, or any other natural material, alive or dead. Collecting for scientific research requires a permit issued by the DNR
  • Collecting of plants including seeds, roots or other non-edible parts of herbaceous plants such as wildflowers or grasses
  • Geocaching
  • Horseback riding
  • Rock climbing
  • Vehicles, including bicycles, ATVs, aircraft, and snowmobiles except on trails and roadways designated for their use

For rules governing state-owned SNAs and other state lands, please consult Chapter NR 45 Wis. Admin. Code [exit DNR]

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Last revised: Thursday, October 11, 2018