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Pokegama-Carnegie Wetlands

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Counties: Douglas


Pokegama - Carnegie Wetlands, 1995. Willow carr broad-leaved sedge meadow. Photograph, E.J. Judziewicz.

Site Description

This site includes the Dwight's Point and Pokegama Wetlands State Natural Areas.

The extensive and poorly drained red clay flats in the headwaters of the Pokegama and Little Pokegama rivers support a large wetland mosaic of shrub swamp, sedge meadow, emergent marsh, and small ponds. This site is characterized by a large complex of shrub wetlands composed mostly of speckled alder and willows, as well as more open wet meadows that are dominated by coarse leaved sedges and bluejoint grass. Widely scattered small pools support a variety of emergent and submergent aquatic macrophytes. Tiny, upland "islets" of white spruce, white pine and red pine, balsam poplar, and trembling aspen punctuate the flats.

Of special significance are the many populations of rare plants occurring in the site's wetlands. Many of the rarities are represented by large and/or multiple populations. It is important to recognize that some of these species are not widespread in the Lake Superior region but are concentrated in the vicinity of the City of Superior. The large size of the site as well as the quality and diversity of open and shrub wetland types also support a diverse assemblage of amphibians and birds.

Additional Comments

Pokegama-Carnegie is the largest and most intact of the red clay wetlands in northwest Wisconsin. It has the greatest floristic diversity, supports some of the largest populations of rare species, and may be less likely in the short-term to suffer destruction or fragmentation owing to expanded development, disrupted hydrology, or incursions of aggressive species. Appropriate management and protection of this site is critically important.

Last revised: Wed, 20 Jun 2012 17:21:15 CDT