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Reserve spot for prairie chicken viewing

5:50 PM, Mar. 29, 2013  |  Comments
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Bird and wildlife enthusiasts and photographers, grab a front row seat for the exotic courtship dance of the Wisconsin native prairie chicken through viewings offered by the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point.

The viewings are held throughout April at the Buena Vista Marsh, located about eight miles south of Stevens Point adjacent to County Highway W. Special blinds offer the opportunity to quietly observe and photograph the male birds as they strut, hop and make a "booming" bassoon-like sound as they inflate and deflate their bright orange air sacs to establish their territory and impress female hens.

The viewings begin before dawn and last about two hours. Guides at the marsh will direct viewers to their blinds. Cost is $15 for adults and $10 for students and senior citizens.

Registration is offered on a first-come basis; call Beth Blicharz at 715-346-3259 or email bblic469@uwsp.edu. For more information, a calendar of availability or a mail-in reservation form, go to www.uwsp.edu/wildlife/pchicken/index.aspx.

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