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Great Swamp Management Area
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Location and Access

Great Swamp Management Area is located within the towns of South Kingstown and Richmond, RI. Access to the Great Swamp is by Liberty Lane which leads into the management area along Great Neck Road. A large public parking area is provided which allows access to several gravel roads and trails that are gated to limit vehicle access. Topographic quad maps for Kingston, RI cover the area.

Habitat

Great Swamp covers a total land area of 3349 acres. Acreage is divided among the following cover types: wetlands (2262 acres), forest cover (897 acres), agricultural land (88 acres), and other lands (102 acres; brush, utilities, etc.). The area contains extensive forested freshwater wetlands, dominated by red maple swamps with some cedar swamp. The Great Swamp Impoundment is a created marsh covering approximately 138 acres. This wetland provides a diversity of wetland cover types including deep and shallow marsh, vegetated and nonvegetated open water, aquatic shrubs and shrub swamp. The diversity of habitats provides an excellent mosaic of cover types for a great number of migratory waterfowl. The DFW actively manages 2.6% (88 acres) of the property as agricultural land to create food plots and other plantings for wildlife. Great Swamp borders the entire northern end of Worden Pond, controlling over 2 miles of pristine shoreline habitat. Additionally, several main tributaries to the Pawcatuck River flow through the area including the Chickasheen Brook, the Usquepaug River, the Chipuxet River, and the Charles River.

Wildlife

Great Swamp Management Area contains a diversity of habitats capable of supporting many types of wildlife. Typical game mammals present include cottontail rabbits, grey squirrel, white-tailed deer and furbearers such as fox, coyote, raccoon, muskrat and mink. Game birds present include ruffed grouse, wild turkey, ring-necked pheasant, bobwhite, woodcock, and waterfowl particularly wood duck, black duck, mallard and Canada goose. During spring and particularly fall migration, large numbers and variety of waterfowl can be observed on the impoundment. Several pairs of osprey also nest at the Great Swamp, using utility poles throughout the area for nest sites. Numerous other non-game wildlife species are present within the management area including locally abundant populations of songbirds, small mammals, amphibians, reptiles and insects. Great Swamp is an excellent area for bird watching, particularly during spring migration in May


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