Link to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Web site Link to the National Wildlife Refuge System Web site U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Arrowwood National Wildlife Refuge Complex - Pingree, North Dakota
   

Natural History

The Arrowwood National Wildlife Refuge Complex lies in the heart of the Prairie Pothole Region of the United States. The landscape of the area was formed by advance and retreat of glaciers. The most recent glacier melted 9,000-12,500 years ago leaving a 50'-500' thick deposit of glacial sediment.

Various ridges, hills, plains and depressions were left as the ice melted. Smaller blocks of ice melting in the sediment left a wealth of depressions which are the wetlands of today. Vegetation which developed in the Complex on the glacially altered landscape represents a transition between the tall grass and short grass prairies. It is commonly referred to as mixed grass prairie.

The James River is an important river system running through Stutsman, Foster, Eddy and Wells Counties. It joins the Missouri River System near Yankton, South Dakota forming a valuable migration route for many species of migratory birds.

The Sheyenne River valley is a deep, steep-walled glacial outburst channel that runs through Barnes, Cass, Eddy, Griggs, and Wells Counties. It flows south to join up with the north flowing Red River near Fargo, ND. Both the Sheyenne River valley and the Red River valley provide important riparian habitat and serve as migration corridors for numerous species of migratory birds.

The Arrowwood National Wildlife Refuge Complex has four major physiographic zones. They are the Red River Valley, Glaciated Plain or Drift Plain, the Missouri Coteau, and the Coteau Slope.






Who We Are | Natural History | News & Events | Links | Site Map | Home