NOAA Funding Expands Middle Bass Island Wetlands Preserve
Conservation partners saved threatened habitat and wildlife on Ohio’s rapidly developing Middle Bass Island by acquiring land for a forested wetlands preserve. This effort has now expanded thanks to a NOAA-funded purchase of an additional 20.8 eight acres, which more than doubles the preserve’s size.
Middle Bass Island is one of the Western Lake Erie Islands, located about 55 miles east of Toledo, where a hot market in rental and vacation homes is eliminating many natural areas. The preserve features standing live and dead timber, small areas of permanent standing water, and hummocks. This habitat is ideal for many creatures, such as the state-threatened Lake Erie watersnake and migratory birds and songbirds stopping to rest and “refuel” on their flight toward Canada.
The Put-in-Bay Township Park District made the purchase with $672,563 in funding from NOAA’s Coastal and Estuarine Land Conservation Program. This program provides matching funds to state and local governments to purchase land important for ecological, historical, scenic, or recreational reasons.
Partners: NOAA Coastal and Estuarine Land Conservation Program, Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, Put-in-Bay Township Park District