Ambler Flatwoods is a dedicated Indiana state nature preserve. It is a big place, but its greatest delights are the small things. Tiny forests of rare club mosses cover the ground. Mushrooms in colorful variety emerge from the leaf litter. Salamanders lurk beneath fallen logs. Migratory birds find temporary shelter high in its trees. The sound of hooting owls punctuates the night. Twenty species of reptiles and amphibians have been identified here.
In early spring, vernal pools and rivulets cover a great portion of the property. During the evening hours, the woodland ponds at Ambler come alive with a choir of calling frogs. This boreal flatwoods natural community is found nowhere else in Indiana and is a haven for plants typically found much farther north. At least 39 state-listed plant species and many others considered rare in the Chicago region are found here.