John Deere Marsh

This 35 acre cattail marsh complex lies at the confluence of the Little Maquoketa River and the Mississippi River. John Deere Inc. leased this area decades ago from the United States Army Corp of Engineers.  John Deere Inc. then constructed a water inlet from the Mississippi River in order to draw fresh water to cool its coal-fired plant.  When the John Deere plant switched to natural gas it no longer needed the water source and the area was returned to the Corp of Engineers.  The area is currently managed by the US Fish and Wildlife Service for public recreation and access to the Mississippi River.  The Dubuque County Conservation Board assists with the management of the area. 

John Deere Marsh attracts numerous species of shore birds and waterfowl throughout the year making it a favorite area for bird enthusiasts.  There is a one and a half mile, crushed limestone hiking trail that provides great access to the entire area.  A small, one lane, gravel boat ramp is available for canoes, kayaks, and small vessels to access the Mississippi River.


John Deere Marsh is located just north of the city of Dubuque on Riverside Road, directly behind the John Deere plant.

John Deere Marsh

18882 Riverside Road

Dubuque, Iowa 52001


This is an excellent area for viewing wildlife.  There is a gravel parking lot, small boat ramp, and 1.5 mile level, crushed limestone hiking trail.

Operating Hours & Seasons

Open year round, sunrise to sunset. 

John Deere Marsh is open for youth only trapping (16 and younger).

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