Once Henry Ford’s personal waterfowl hunting preserve, the Ford Marsh in southeast Michigan is now part of the 5,700-acre Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge, located within the River Raisin Area of Concern. The marsh’s 175 acres of Lake Erie wetlands provide crucial habitat for bald eagles, wood ducks, osprey, blue-winged teal, whitetail deer, great blue herons, and hundreds of other native plant and wildlife species. Unfortunately, habitat quality has declined over many decades at Ford Marsh following the installation of a dike where the River Raisin empties into Lake Erie. This dike prevented water levels in the marsh to fluctuate. Without the natural flooding and drainage patterns that are crucial to supporting healthy native wildlife and vegetation, wetland conditions stagnated, allowing aquatic invasive plants like water lily and phragmites to heavily colonize the area. Now, thanks to a Great Lakes Restoration Initiative grant, Ducks Unlimited has restored these vital wetlands. Read more here.
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