Wolves in the Meadows, Walleye in the Weeds
The Tamarac National Wildlife Refuge has many secrets hidden within its 42,700 acres, the first of which it isn’t a designated state forest, but a refuge.
And taking advantage of that refuge are two packs of timber wolves of about 10 to 12 animals each. The wolves have been seen by hunters and hikers and can be heard on winter nights in the refuge.
Tamarac is on the western edge of Minnesota’s wolf range. Refuge officials hope to learn more about the secretive canine once a study has been completed and a photographer goes to work tracking the animals.
While there isn’t any camping in the refuge, there is hiking, cross country skiing, hunting and fishing and lots of environmental education programs going on under the tall pine and deciduous forests.
There are also 23 eagle nests in the refuge, as well as ruffed grouse and woodcock in abundance along the three rivers that flow through the marshes, bogs and shrub swamps.
The near-pristine Tamarac National Wildlife Refuge is in the heart of one of the most diverse vegetative transition zones, where hardwood forests, coniferous forests and the tallgrass prairie converge. This diversity of habitat brings with it a wealth of wildlife, with 258 species of birds and 50 species of mammals. This spring you can find migrating warblers and in the fall look for an abundance of waterfowl, including 15,000 ring-necked ducks at its peak. Trumpeter swans have also been re-introduced to the refuge.
Our sources also tell us there are many great walleye fishing spots in the refuge, but our sources insist on keeping them secret.
Humans can also be found at the attractive visitor center, which offers a spectacular view of the marshes and trees that are typical of the Tamarac Refuge.