The Oxford Junction Wildlife Area in southeast Jones County might be hard to find on a map made before 2017. That’s because it didn’t exist - it’s only two years old.
The 450-acre public area owned by the Iowa DNR, split into two parcels, emerged from the Wapsipinicon River floodplain because the river has a habit of leaving its banks. It will grow by 66 acres, possibly as early as fall 2018, when an adjacent floodplain forest is added.
The sea of young prairie is alive with redwing black birds, grasshoppers, goldfinches, butterflies, dragonflies and pheasants.
There are two, three-acre ponds on the east tract that offers good fishing for those willing to explore. The ponds are very different – one is surrounded by trees with little shore fishing access, the other is surrounded by sand deposits with a fish population heavily influenced by the river and little shade. These ponds would also be a good place to take a kayak.
The Twin Rivers Chapter of Pheasants Forever has been hands on partners as have the Dubuque County Conservation Society. In fact, the broad partnership includes Wapsi Bottoms Whitetails Unlimited, Delaware County Pheasants Forever, Jones County Conservation Board, Linn County Pheasants Forever, National Whitetails Unlimited, Grant Wood Loop, Matt McQuillen, the Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation and the Iowa Department of Natural Resources.
ADDRESS41.980868, -90.951563, Oxford Junctions, Iowa
21 & OVERNO