Brandon Swamp WMA

Birds of Interest

The mixture of seasonally flooded woodlands and old fields provides excellent feeding habitat for waterfowl and wading birds when inundated. Breeding ducks include mallards, black ducks, hooded mergansers, blue-winged teals, and wood ducks. Willow flycatchers, eastern kingbirds, and northern waterthrushes forage by the water’s edge, while belted kingfishers patrol the river for fish. Many beautiful songbird songs may be heard such as the veery, hermit thrush, wood thrush, Baltimore oriole, and warbling vireo. Upland game birds are ruffed grouse, turkey, and woodcock. Several types of owls and woodland hawks inhabit the swamp.

About this Location

Brandon Swamp Wildlife Management Area (WMA) is a 278-acre parcel owned by the State of Vermont and managed by the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department. It is located in the towns of Brandon and Leicester, with the majority of the land being in Brandon. The WMA is bordered by Otter Creek to the east and the Brandon-Sudbury and Brandon-Whiting town lines to the west. It is south of Leicester/Whiting Road and east of Bald Hill. There is a small parking area at the northern end of the WMA that can be accessed by turning south off of Leicester Junction Road just west of Leicester Junction. Access across the WMA is difficult, and by foot or boat only.

Brandon Swamp WMA is a large floodplain swamp with cedar ringed by red maple-black ash hardwoods. It is one of the State’s larger wetland complexes. The red maple-northern white cedar swamp is mossy and hummocky, with hidden pools. Cedar is dense in the center. In the riparian areas, there are silver maple, willow, elm, basswood, and cottonwood. The former agricultural fields lay alongside Otter Creek. Approximately 1.5 miles of the Otter Creek streambank is included in this WMA. Mosquitoes are dense in season.


  • Restrooms on site

  • Wheelchair accessible trail

  • Entrance fee

Content from Brandon Swamp Wildlife Management Area guide and map

Last updated December 3, 2023