Moist-soil habitats are managed to provide winter waterfowl habitat and year-round habitat for wading birds.
Invasive species can be native or exotic, but both are characterized by aggressively colonizing areas and forming monocultures (plant communities dominated by one species). The negative impacts of invasive species are as numerous and diverse as the variety of invasive species themselves. At Tallahatchie NWR, staff not only remove invasive species, they also prevent their introduction and spread. Unfortunately, many invasive species have been established so long and are so wide-spread (like fire ants) that their complete removal is impossible. For those species, selective control is used by targeting areas that are most important for wildlife and habitat management.
Tallahatchie NWR and the surrounding landscape were historically a vast bottomland hardwood forest. Today, most of these lands have been deforested and planted in agricultural crops. As the refuge acquires agricultural land, it is retired from crop production and replanted with native hardwood tree species, including a variety of oaks, hickories, and ash. Reforesting these areas helps to connect remnant patches of forest and provide various successional stages and structure for wildlife habitat.
Moist soil management provides a combination of food and cover resources for a variety of wildlife, including waterfowl, wading birds, and shorebirds. This requires a variety of structure, water depths, and seasonal water availability. The refuge biologist carefully plans the management of each unit, deciding when units should be drained and flooded and whether disking or mowing is needed to make vegetation more favorable for wildlife. Other units may remain flooded throughout the year to provide habitat for breeding wood ducks and other resident wildlife as well as reduce woody plant encroachment into the ponds.
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This small songbird can be identified by its yellowish chest and can be found in the old fields on our refuge.