Connect with Nature at Muscatatuck


Connecting With Nature is Easy at Muscatatuck!

The NATURE DISCOVERY AREA, adjacent to the Visitor Center overflow parking lot, is a great place to youngsters to explore. There is a frog pond (with crossing logs), hollow trees and logs to climb on, a sand pile, and a short trail into the woods where interesting things can often be found.  

NATURE TIME is a program for pre-school youngsters that is held the second Wednesday of each month from 9:30 am to 11 am at the Visitor Center. The program features a different natural history topic each month and includes interactive activities including a song, story, and craft each month. It's great fun for all, and no advance registration is required. A parent/guardian should stay with their child during the program.

The JUNIOR DUCK STAMP PROGRAM is an easy to enter "Conservation Through Art" contest open to students in grades K-12. Students draw a picture of a native duck, goose, or swan and send it into Muscatatuck by March 15 every year. Prizes are awarded in age categories, and the national winning artwork is made into a Junior Duck Stamp. For more details click here.

DISCOVERY POND is a kids-only fishing pond south of the refuge Office (just across the main road from the Visitor Center). The pond is only open to fishing for those 15 years of age and under, but older folks may come, watch, and provide help if needed. There is an accessible sidewalk leading to the pond and a fishing pier to make it easy to get fishing lines in the water. At Discovery Pond you might find largemouth bass, bluegill, and crappie... along with frogs, dragonflies, and lots of other interesting critters to check out.  

JUNIOR BIRDER programs are given to groups by appointment. Youngsters can learn the basics of birds and birdwatching while having fun with interactive birding activities. For more information or to schedule a program email or call the Office.

JUNIOR MASTER NATURALIST programs are held during the summer about every other year at the refuge.  Check out the Indiana Department of Natural Resources website for more information about that program. 

An INVASIVE SPECIES PATCH is available to youngsters who spend 6 hours removing invasive plants on the refuge. In April garlic mustard is easy to pull but for those who want more challenging work autumn olive, and many other plants, can be removed year-round. All of the work does not have to be done on one day and refuge staff will assist in planning the work.  

A JUNIOR RANGER FISHING badge is available to youngsters that complete requirements in a workbook.The workbook can be downloaded from the internet at Junior Ranger Lets Go Fishing. After completion the workbook can be dropped off or mailed to the refuge and the youngster will receive the badge.  

Refuge staff and volunteers enjoy working with youth groups that visit the refuge on badges/activities relating to wildlife and conservation. We also have lots of service opportunities available. Email us or call the Office for more information or to make an appointment for a visit.