Day Trip: Goose Pond Fish And Wildlife Area

It’s peak migration season for sandhill cranes in Indiana’s largest wetlands preserve.
Now is a good time to migrate south to the Goose Pond Fish and Wildlife Area near Linton. March marks the end of the peak migration season in Indiana for the sandhill crane, which wasn’t spotted in Greene County until Goose Pond’s 8,000 acres of marsh and grassland habitat were restored a few years ago. You can see thousands of the water-loving birds from a new state-of-the-art visitor’s center, which overlooks the state’s largest wetlands preserve.
Goose Pond FWA, along with other restoration projects in the Eastern Greater Sandhill Crane range, have helped the species’s population rebound significantly. The birds have been called an “umbrella species” and help lead to greater biodiversity—a fact easily witnessed from these marshy shores.
Can’t make it in March? There’s plenty to see the rest of the year at this booming ecosystem. You can traipse along on your own or take a tour to spot frogs, snakes, butterflies, caterpillars, and several of the more than 250 bird species that have been documented in the wilderness area—including American white pelicans and federally endangered whooping cranes. You can even hunt, fish, and gather berries, nuts, and mushrooms on the property (some permitting required).