Open Water & Cattail Marsh
Lopas Pond and its cattail marsh are representative of the shallow open water communities found on the Reserve. Directly connected to Lake Winnebago, this aquatic system provides nursery habitat for many fish. The cattail marsh is challenged by Purple Loosestrife (Lythrum salicaria) but monitored and managed with purple loosestrife beetles. Bartz Pond, created at the site of an old roadbed, provides important aquatic habitat and nesting site on the east end of the Reserve. This pond area provides habitat for frog reproduction and metamorphosis, common frogs in this area are green frog (Rana clamitans), leopard frogs (Lithobates pipiens) and wood frogs (Lithobates sylvaticus). Painted turtles (Chrysemys picta) and snapping turtles (Chelydra serpentina) commonly reside in the ponded areas as well.
Shallow, open water communities are characterized by submergent, floating and floating-leaved aquatic vegetation that may include pondweeds (Potamogeton sp.), water lilies (Nymphaeaceae), water milfoil (Myriophyllum sp), cattail (Typha sp.), and duckweeds (Lemna sp.). These communities provide important habitat for waterfowl, terns, furbearers, fish, frogs, turtles, and aquatic invertebrates. They also provide an important aesthetic resource for the public.