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Stricker's Pond

Stricker's Pond
Address: 7214 Longmeadow Rd.
Hours: 4:00am - dusk
Park Type:> Conservation
Acres: 13.49
Restroom: No
Drinking Water: No

Park History

The pond system started to change with agricultural cultivation of the surrounding uplands in the 1870's.  Plowed fields resulted in increased runoff and sedimentation.  More dramatic changes occurred when the landscape was subsequently converted to residential development.  The huge increase in impervious surfaces (areas which don't allow water to infiltrate, such as sidewalks, streets, driveways, house roofs) increased the amount of stormwater runoff reaching the pond.  Rather than being absorbed by the ground and slowly released through the water table, more rainwater now flows directly to the pond.  Finally, a series of very wet years in the 1990's increased water levels dramatically.  Subsequent recurring periods of intense rainfall events, such as June 2008 and August 2018, have eliminated emergent plants, killed surrounding trees, exacerbated excessive algae growth, and raised flooding concerns. 

To alleviate these problems, in 2000, the City of Middleton and the City of Madison cooperated to implement a plan that included construction of a forebay on the south end of Stricker's Pond to capture incoming sediment.  This plan also called for construction of a water control structure at the northeast corner of Stricker's Pond to manage water levels and allow drainage to Tiedeman's Pond.  From Tiedeman's Pond, excess water is then pumped to the storm sewer system that drains to Lake Mendota.  After project completion, seven species of native emergent wetland plants were established through volunteer plantings, but only American lotus has managed to survive.

While these engineered features created a drainage outlet and reduced sedimentation, water quality is still impaired in this highly urbanized 557-acre watershed.  Contributing to the problem is a newly introduced population of goldfish.  Related to carp, goldfish feed on the pond bottom, stirring sediment and nutrients into the water column, which further exacerbate poor water quality.  The goldfish population is also partly to blame for the low diversity and abundance of aquatic plants and macroinvertebrates observed in recent years.  

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Conservation Park Rules

Conservation Parks are uniquely managed to further protect native species and wildlife. The preservation of conservation parks includes some of the following. More information may be found in Madison General Ordinances 8.40.

  • Alcohol

    Alcohol is prohibited in all conservation parks.

  • Bicycles & Motor Vehicles

    Bicycles and motor vehicles are restricted to entrance roads and parking lots.

  • Dogs

    Dogs and horses are not allowed.

  • Fire

    Fires and picnics are prohibited.

  • Firearms

    No firearms or weapons are permitted in the restrooms or shelters. Violators are considered trespassers and subject to forfeiture or arrest.

  • Glass

    Glass is not allowed.

  • Hunting & Trapping

    Hunting and trapping are prohibited.

  • Open Hours

    Conservation park hours are 4am until one hour after sunset.

  • Plants

    All plants and animals are protected. Disturbance or removal requires written permission.

  • Trails

    Stay on and use designated trails only.

  • Trash & Recycling

    Place trash in container provided. Please take recyclable material home for proper disposal.