Leopold Reserve

Background on Ecosystem

Esteemed naturalist and writer Aldo Leopold purchased land that was damaged by intensive agriculture and made efforts to restore it to a more naturally functioning ecosystem. This area’s lowland forests near the Wisconsin River are subjected to an abundance of traffic noise from two interstate highways that were built and/or expanded after Leopold’s death.

Specific Location

Leopold Pine Island Important Bird Area, Sauk County, Wisconsin, United States of America

Biome Classification(s)

Köppen-Geiger: Dfb Snow Fully Humid Warm Summer

Key Partners

Threats to Ecosystems and Animals

Land use change, habitat fragmentation, and noise pollution can have negative consequences for animals in this region.


  • Study 1: Highway Impact Study. In this study we examined the changes in bird communities and their resultant soundscapes at different distances from highways to investigate the impact of habitat structure and technophony.