Set in southwestern Indiana, Goose Pond: The Story Of A Wetland & Its Neighbors chronicles the struggle that resulted in the largest and one of the most successful wetland restorations of its kind in US history, the 8,000-acre Goose Pond Fish & Wildlife Area.
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Goose Pond: The Story of a Wetland & Its Neighbors tells of efforts to reclaim the wetland dating as far back as the 1930s when conservationists teamed with local sportsmen in a plan to turn Goose Pond into "a bird haven." A "Goose Pond Lake Project" was initiated in the 1940s, but was stalled in 1950 by lack of government support due to the Korean War. The US Fish & Wildlife Service nearly OK'd Goose Pond for a "National Wildlife Refuge" in 1959. In the early 1990s, local opposition prevented the Indiana Department of Natural Resources from succeeding in its initial bid to make Goose Pond a "Fish & Wildlife Area."
Goose Pond was mired in politics as mucky as the clay soil covering it. In 1999, a pair of passionate conservationists came to the rescue, persuading the Goose Pond property owner to enroll his land in the newly created Wetlands Reserve Program, within the USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service. This enrollment placed the Goose Pond property in a permanent easement, meaning it could never again be farmed.
The Indiana Department of Natural Resources once again became involved and the wetland restoration began.
At the dedication of the Goose Pond Fish & Wildlife Area in September 2010, Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels proclaimed, "Every projection I was ever shown for what might happen, and how quickly, has been exceeded...number of waterfowl, number of species, number of visitors...it didn't matter what it was...every expectation has been exceeded."