Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuge (Audubon IBA) webpage
Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuge webpage
Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuge map
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About Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuge Important Bird Area
Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuge is located in Swanton where the Missisquoi River joins Lake Champlain, forming one of the largest wetland complexes in the state. Mississquoi combines extensive bottomland and grassland habitat with a number of wetland community types. Management practices such as the creation of impoundments has provided critical habitat for breeding and migrating waterfowl as well as a number of state listed species. Vermont Natural Community types include Lakeside Floodplain Forest, Red or Silver Maple-Green Ash Swamp, Cattail, Deep Broadleaf and Deep Bulrush marshes, Buttonbush Swamp and Pitch Pine Woodland Bog.
Missisquoi’s size and location on Lake Champlain make it an ideal migratory stopover for a number of waterfowl species including Black Duck, Mallard, Ring-necked Duck and Wood Duck. Breeding species include all of the above (with the exception of Ring-necked Duck) as well as Green and Blue-winged teal, Hooded Merganser and Common Goldeneye. More than a third of the state endangered Osprey population breeds here as well as the entire population of state threatened Black Tern. Missisquoi is also home to the largest Great Blue Heron (S1) colony in the state. Virginia Rail, Common Moornhen (S2), Sora (S2) and Pied-billed Grebe (S2) can also be found in the refuges extensive marshes.
Missisquoi is owned and managed by the federal government. Annual monitoring of waterfowl, Osprey, Black Tern, marshbirds, and grassland birds is ongoing. Conservation issues include invasive species such as purple loosestrife, Eurasian milfoil and zebra mussels as well as agricultural run-off from farms upstream. A new headquarters is planned in the coming years.
From Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuge (Audubon IBA) webpage