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Twin Swamps


Twin Swamps, an Indiana State Dedicated Nature Preserve about 600 acres in size, is owned and managed by the Indiana Department of Natural Resources, Division of Nature Preserves. It consists of a swamp cottonwood-bald cypress swamp and an overcup oak swamp with a southern flatwoods community in between the two swamps. The bald cypress swamp is the northern most bald cypress swamp in the United States. Twin Swamps harbors 26 state listed endangered, threatened or rare species, as well as, many other species normally associated with this habitat. Because of its size and its diverse ecosystems that are rare in Indiana, the Division of Nature Preserves has hosted a number of biological surveys at Twin Swamps, including swamp rabbit research, amphibian and reptiles surveys, and butterfly and moth surveys. Twin Swamps is part of a large complex of protected lands located near the confluence of the Wabash and Ohio Rivers. Other partners in protection include the Indiana Department of Natural Resources Division of Fish and Wildlife, The Nature Conservancy, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. These areas provide significant floodwater storage for these two rivers. The Division of Nature Preserves, maintains a boardwalk trail through Twin Swamps so that visitors can experience the swamps while protecting the fragile nature of the preserve.  

Exemplary Ecosystem Services

Maintains ecological connectivity/cohesion

Recreation (birdwatching, ecotourism)

Flood storage/mitigation

Conservation Status and Threats

  • Conservation status

    State Protection
  • Adjacent land use

    Agricultural (cropland, orchards, greenhouse)
  • Approximate natural buffer width

    > 100 ft
  • Other Information


  • Approximate size (ha):

  • General wetland characterization:

    Inland Fresh Wooded Swamp
  • Adjacent water bod(ies)

  • Approximate stream order

  • Name of body of water

  • Surficial geology

  • Soils

    Elkinsville Silt Loam, Ginat Silt Loam, Weinbach Silt Loam, Pekin Silt Loam

Flora and Fauna

  • Dominant flora

    Taxodium distichum, Quercus lyrata, Populus heterophylla, Carya ovata, Quercus bicolor, Quercus pagoda, Quercus palustris, Acer rubrum, Liquidambar styraciflua, Cephalanthus occidentalis, Azolla caroliniana
  • Unique flora

    Isoetes melanopoda, Hottonia inflata, Ranunculus laxicaulis, Ranunculus pusillus, Rhynchospora corniculata var. interior, Solidago buckleyi, Taxodium distichum
  • Dominant fauna

    Ambystoma maculatum, Ambystoma opacum, Ambystoma texanum, Ambystoma talpoideum, Plethodon cinereus, Plethodon dorsalis, Siren intermedia, Notophthalmus viridescens, Hyla chrysoscelis, Rana clamitans melanota, Rana utricularia, Terrepene caroliniana, Eumeces fasciatus, Elaphae obsoleta spiloides, Nerodia erythrogaster neglecta, Thamnophis sirtalis, king rail, prothonotary warbler
  • Rare fauna

    Catocala marmorata, Ambystoma talpoideum, Sylvilagus aquaticus, Nerodia erythrogaster neglecta


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