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USA Parks
Ohio
Northwest Ohio Region
West Sister Island National Wildlife Refuge
WEST SISTER ISLAND NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE
WEST SISTER ISLAND NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE
Lake Erie, Ohio

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West Sister Island National Wildlife Refuge is located in the western basin of Lake Erie. It is jointly owned by the U.S. Coast Guard and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Staff at the Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge manage the island as a wilderness area, as provided under the Federal Wilderness Act. West Sister Island is Ohio's only Wilderness Area. <P>In 1937, President Franklin D. Roosevelt established West Sister Island "as a refuge and breeding ground for migratory birds and other wildlife...," and it was specifically designated to protect the largest wading bird nesting colony on the U.S. Great Lakes. West Sister Island's rookery is a host for great blue herons, great egrets, black-crowned night herons, and cormorants. The water around the island is too deep for the wading birds to feed in, so they must travel an eighteen mile round trip to the mainland marshes to hunt for food for themselves and their young. To protect this vital nesting area, public access is permitted for research only. <P>Most of the island is covered with trees. Tall hackberry trees make up most of the canopy, with an understory of poison ivy 12 feet tall. Great solomon's seal reaches 7-9 feet in height, and a great variety of ferns, wildflowers, mushrooms, and other plant life abound. The island is composed of glacial fill over a limestone shelf. <P>


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Nearby Parks


Things To Do in the Area
Camp Patmos - Kelleys Island, OHFamily Outting
Week long youth camps. Located on the shores of Kelleys Island. Guests will learn to sail, wakeboard, waterski while enjoying the beauty of the Lake Erie island.
Web Site: camppatmos.com
22.7 miles from park*
Visitor Comments, Memories and Reviews
July 25 Gorgeous lighthouse--thousands of birds by Ivy
I visited by waverunner and was able to come within 10 feet of the island. Hundreds of egrets, herons, komorants, and others in each tree. Spectacular rocky ledges abound. The lighthouse and cove are amazing. I only wish I could have gone ashore.


Area Campgrounds

Inland Mobile Home Park & Marina
10655 W. State Rt 2
Oak Harbor, OH
419-838-5071


Area Fishing Related Businesses
Fenwick Marina
10195 W State Route 2
Oak Harbor, OH
(419) 898-7009


Happy Hooker Bait Store
9688 W State Route 2
Oak Harbor, OH
(419) 898-9676


Area Accommodations (over 15 miles away)
Indian Creek Camp Conference Center - Tecumseh, MICampgrounds
Enjoy Southeast Michigan's Best Family Camping experience at our clean, quiet, friendly campground. Jumping Pillow, WiFi, Paddle Boats, Minigolf, Swimming, Bicycling and more
Web Site: indiancreekcamping.com
45.7 miles from park*
Camp Patmos - Kelleys Island, OHConference Center
Week long youth camps. Located on the shores of Kelleys Island. Guests will learn to sail, wakeboard, waterski while enjoying the beauty of the Lake Erie island.
Web Site: camppatmos.com
22.7 miles from park*
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USA Parks
Ohio
Northwest Ohio Region
West Sister Island National Wildlife Refuge
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