Biotic life does not completely disappear in winter. A few bird and mammal species are still active throughout winter, but what about plants and insects?
The best location to observe winter biologic activity is in open flowing streams. Many plant species continue to grow in winter when the water is open. Species such as wild celery, several pondweeds, water starwort, and algae persist in mid-winter. Aquatic insects continune to forage and one species in particular, the small winter stonefly, emerges as an adult in late winter. Many of these open streams and their adjacent bank vegetation, especially those farthest south and west, can harbor various bird species (Belted Kingfisher, Great Blue Heron, and Song Sparrow, etc.) that would normally winter much farther south.
A great publicly accessible location to observe winter stream activity is Lawrence Creek in east central Adams and west central Marquette counties. From the intersection of County Highways A and E in Lawrence, go north on A - 0.8 miles, then west on Eagle Avenue 2.5 miles to a parking area north of the road. A trail leads to the creek.