Bulrush marsh
Grays Habitat
Although it is a natural lake, the water level on the refuge is regulated according to agreements with off-refuge interests. Habitat management on the refuge focuses on measures to benefit cranes and waterfowl. Vegetation is manipulated by hay cutting, cattle grazing, and controlled burns, creating feeding and nesting sites for a variety of bird species. An ongoing project at the refuge is developing more clearings, ponds, and islands in the "lakebed". More open water in the dense marsh vegetation benefits many nesting waterbirds and waterfowl.

Facts About Habitat

Grays Lake is actually a high elevation bulrush marsh, the largest in the world.  Hardstem bulrush, a deciduous herbaceous plant, is distinguished by long cylindric stems from 5 to 8 feet tall.The seeds are one of the most important and commonly used foods of ducks and of certain marshbirds and shorebirds. For more detailed information on bulrush, see the USDA bulrush fact sheet.