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Bayview Beach-Sioux River Slough

Back to Eastern Lake Superior

Counties: Bayfield


Bayview Beach - Sioux River Slough. Sedge fen (with some common reed, Phragmites australis) near outlet of Sioux River, Sept. 1996. Photograph, E.J. Epstein.

Site Description

The wetland complex at the Sioux River mouth includes emergent marsh and alder thicket communities adjoining a narrow, mile-long open peaty swale between two parallel sandspits. Major swale communities are an acid, weakly minerotrophic coastal bog and a wet coastal fen. The beach ridges are forested with white and red pines, balsam fir, and paper birch. The open peatlands of the swale are composed of Sphagnum mosses, ericaceous shrubs, and sedges, with scattered small tamarack. Wetter areas support a mat of woolly sedge, with buckbean, sweet gale and water horsetail. The dominant species of the marsh at the Sioux River mouth are typical of Lake Superior stands and include bur-reeds, soft-stemmed bulrush, cattails, lake sedge, and water arum. Threats include the spread of common reed grass and purple loosestrife, disruption of hydrology and water chemistry, recreational overuse, and maintenance activities on State Trunk Highway 13. Recommendations include development of a management and protection plan with the Township, DNR Bureaus of Fish Management and Endangered Resources, and the Wisconsin Department of Transportation. The plan should provide for periodic monitoring of water quality and both rare and invasive plant species. Currently, monitoring is being conducted of phragmites and narrow-leaved cattail by Northland College. Many rare plants and animals occur at the site. Use by migratory birds can be significant, especially in the spring

Additional Comments

Partially developed to accommodate a state highway and public beach, this site contains significant marsh and fen communities and supports many rare species.

Last revised: Wed, 20 Jun 2012 17:21:11 CDT