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Wildlife Viewing > Classic South > Dyar Pasture M.A.R.S.H. Project

Dyar Pasture M.A.R.S.H. Project

Description: This is a joint waterfowl habitat creation project of the State Wildlife Resources Division and Ducks Unlimited, a non-profit waterfowl conservation organization. The result is a 50-acre wetland complex adjacent to beautiful Lake Oconee. The water level in shallow ponds is lowered during spring and summer to allow waterfowl food plants to grow. These ponds are then flooded during fall and winter to provide resting sites and access to food plants and seeds for waterfowl. Surrounding Dyar Pastures, Lake Oconee and the Oconee National Forest providing many additional wildlife viewing and outdoor recreation opportunities.

Viewing Information: There are year-round opportunities for excellent bird watching at this ever-changing wetland complex. Each season with its changing water level and food availability brings a new mix of species. Spring and summer bring great blue herons, little blue herons and numerous shore birds to feed in the shallow waters. Ospreys and bald eagles that nest on Lake Oconee might be seen feeding here as well. Wood storks may use the area if fish are concentrated in isolated pools during August and September. The ideal conditions for prey species also make ideal conditions for predators, so bobcats, foxes, coyotes, minks, otters, and other predators are seen frequently. The varied habitats surrounding this project are home to many species of songbirds. During fall and winter these flooded ponds attract wood ducks, mallards, blue-winged teals and, occasionally, pintails. The mixed pine-hardwood forests around this area have high populations of white-tailed deer, wild turkeys, gray squirrels and raccoons. An extensive road system throughout the National Forest provides access to many excellent wildlife viewing areas.

Directions: From Madison, travel US Hwy. 278 east. Cross the Apalachee River into Green County and then turn left onto the third paved road. Travel apx. .8 miles into the community of Greshamville and turn right on the first paved road at the Methodist Church. Travel apx. 2.3 miles, crossing Greenbriar Creek, to the entrance. Follow Forest Service Road 1267 through the pasture to the parking area. Gravel foot path from the parking area leads north to the impoundment.

Management: Georgia DNR, Wildlife Resources Division, 770-918-6416; U.S. Forest Service, 706-485-7110

Closest Town: Madison, GA

Additional Information: Spotting scopes or binoculars are very helpful for viewing birds from a distance in the impoundment.

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