Fens: Elgin’s Natural Treasures

What is a Fen? They are unique wetlands communities, formed out of the deposits left by glaciers. Alkaline springs with year-round temperatures of fifty degrees running through the ice age deposits produce a special plat population. Elgin is home to two types of fens: a river fluff fen at Trout Park and Bluff Spring’s prairie fen.

Trout park became a dedicated Illinois Nature Preserve in 1972 with 26 acres of forested fen with seep springs. In 1987, Bluff Spring Fen became a dedicated Illinois Nature Preserve. It boasts 91 acers of grass fen, prairie, sedge meadow, and savannah communitie4s, with well over 400 plant species.

The Illinois Nature Preserves Commission’s mission is to protect high quality natural areas and habitats of endangered and threatened species. Every person can help by respecting these rare treasures and flowing guidelines that help preserve them for future generations.