Slate shows off some of the fruits of labor that the environmental movement has worked so hard for. Seven places saved by conservation.
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Horicon Marsh, Wisconsin. … The marsh was dammed for water power, then undammed, then opened for large-scale duck hunting, then drained for farming. In the 1920s and early ’30s, its exposed peat soils dried out and repeatedly caught fire, leaving it a literal smoldering ruin. Enter the Izaak Walton League, which lobbied the Wisconsin legislature to restore the marsh. In 1934 the fires were doused and water started flowing once again. As marsh plants grew back, waterfowl followed. Today Horicon Marsh covers 50 square miles and is the largest freshwater cattail marsh in the United States. … A vital stop on bird migration routes, it has been named a Wetland of International Importance under the Ramsar Convention (an international environmental treaty) and a Globally Important Bird Area by the American Bird Conservancy. More than 300 species of birds have been sighted there, drawing birders year-round.