Shepherd Swamp is 10 acres of restored wetland habitat to abundant wildlife. Calling leopard frogs, chorus frogs welcome spring at the Swamp in March/ April, when they can be heard after dusk as they attempt to attract a mate. Garter snakes slither through the grass searching for insects to eat, while red winged balckbirds call from above the swamp.
Long before the swamp belonged to NICHES Land Trust, restoration and conservation were underway. In 1991, the final year of harvest was pulled from the field and the restoration of the Shepherd Swamp was begun. Tile lines were removed allowing the depression in the field to once again hold water. The southern end of the property was planted to oaks and the intervening area to the south was planted to prairie. The prairie and wetland were burned frequently, invasive species were sprayed and cut and new seed was harvested from local natural areas to seed the plantings. Bruce and Carolyn Shepherd transformed the soybean field into a thriving wetland, an incredible accomplishment.
NICHES received the property as a full donation from Bruce and Carolyn Shepherd in 2008.