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Wildlife Management

Jefferson Marsh Wildlife Area

COVID-19 Update

On Friday, May 1 and at the direction of Gov. Evers, the department reopened state parks, forests and sites within the Lower Wisconsin State Riverway with special conditions. Four State Natural Areas remain closed: Parfrey's Glen, Pewits Nest, Gibraltar Rock and Dells of the Wisconsin River. All Wildlife Areas and Fisheries Areas are open. For more information, please visit the DNR's COVID-19 information webpage for the full list of conditions, including hours of operation, admission fees and more.

Jefferson Marsh Wildlife Area

Jefferson Marsh Wildlife Area consists of approximately 3000 acres lying between 1 and 3 miles east/southeast of the City of Jefferson, Jefferson County. This wildlife area is primarily a large wetland restored in 2005 from agricultural drainage. This restoration resulted in a diverse wetland ranging from open water marsh in the south to a 900-acre tamarack bog in the north. The Jefferson Tamarack Swamp State Natural Area is located within the Jefferson Marsh Wildlife Area.

To find the wildlife area travel east of Jefferson on US Hwy 18 about one mile and watch for a parking lot on the south side of the road. Another option is to head east of Jefferson on US Hwy 18 and turn south on county Hwy Y. Continue approximately 2.5 miles southeast on Highway Y to 3 different parking lots centrally located within the property.

The restored wetlands south of Highway Y can provide excellent waterfowl hunting opportunities while the uplands and tamarack bog between Highways Y and 18 can provide a remote deer hunting experience in southern Wisconsin. The majority of the wildlife area provides excellent opportunities for walking and wildlife watching due to extensive internal access roads. Dove hunting opportunities on 6 acres of sunflower and corn fields.


The Jefferson Marsh Wildlife Area is primarily managed as a restored wetland complex with the objectives of providing opportunities for hunting and wildlife watching.

Habitat management is aimed at maintaining and restoring native flora to the property. The management techniques employed will include prescribed fire, brushing, mowing and other invasive species removal efforts. For a complete list of resource management, development and protection objectives, as well as public use management and development objectives.

The Glacial Heritage Area master plan was completed in 2011 and guides the long term management of this property. Progress toward achieving the goals of the master plan are tracked through annual monitoring reports.


The Jefferson Marsh Wildlife Area offers many recreational opportunities.

  • Birding
  • Canoeing
  • Cross country skiing (no designated trail)
  • Fishing
  • Hiking (no designated trail)
  • Hunting - especially noted for pheasant, deer, turkey and waterfowl
  • Snowmobiling trail
  • Trapping
  • Wild edibles/gathering
  • Wildlife viewing

Download [PDF] a map of this property.

If you are interested in exploring this property further, you can access an interactive map.

Useful links
Last revised: Wednesday May 06 2020