The refuge is located on the historic Glacial Lake Agassiz beach ridge transition zone, changing from northern tallgrass prairie/aspen parkland to eastern deciduous forest. Current ecological communities on the refuge consist of northern tallgrass prairie, prairie wetlands, maple-basswood forest, oak savannah, and aspen-ironwood-ash-birch regrowth. Sundew Bog, a rich fen area that sustains the carnivorous round-leafed sundew plant, as well as other rare indigenous plants, is the most unusual remnant plant community on the refuge. The refuge visitor center and an extensive trail system allow for optimum wildlife observation and photography. The unique combination of habitats provides sanctuary for an impressive diversity of mammals, raptors, invertebrates and over 100 species of migratory waterfowl and songbirds that breed and migrate through the refuge each year.