Foxfire South Nature Area is an 19-acre natural area located in northeastern Ann Arbor. View the Ann Arbor Parks and Nature Areas map for location context.
Foxfire South Nature Area is one of a number of city park properties with no trails or amenities. These natural areas represent a unique recreation and conservation feature of the city’s park system. In these relatively few spaces across the city, off-trail exploration is encouraged – a rare opportunity to meander through a wild space in our urban context. Visitors are also invited to reflect on the conservation value and biodiversity of these spaces, where the Parks & Recreation’s Natural Area Preservation staff and volunteers work to steward, restore and inventory the natural communities throughout the city’s parks.
Foxfire South contains habitat for locally uncommon butterflies such as the Acadian Hairstreak, which is found along streams and in wetlands where willows occur. The plentiful wetland wildflowers here provide nectar sources for these butterflies, and the Natural Area Preservation Program is restoring this area to improve habitat and reduce invasive species.
The ecosystem consists of woodland, wetland and shrubland. Glaciers once melted here, depositing the gravel and other rock that form the hills. There is also a small wetland that connects to the
Dhu Varren Woods Nature Area wetland. This wetland generally keeps visitors from crossing between the two nature areas.
American toads, spring peeper frogs, and pileated woodpeckers have been observed in the park. Native plants of note include sedge, whorled loosestrife, shrubby cinquefoil, pawpaw, rue anemone, flowering dogwood, small fringed gentian, sharp-fruited rush and northern bog violet. The not-so-common black maple may be found down by the creek. Native plants of note include sedges, whorled loosestrife, pawpaw, flowering dogwood, small fringed gentian, and sharp-fruited rush. The not-so-common black maple may be found down by the creek. Bitternut and shagbark hickories abound at the tops of the hills.