Description - Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge Complex is comprised of three refuges -- Cedar Point NWR, Ottawa NWR and West Sister Island NWR. West Sister Island NWR, is Ohio's only wilderness area and is located about 9 miles offshore in Lake Erie.
Copyright: - US Fish and Wildlife Service
Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge
Refuge areas are important for migratory birds, neotropical passerines, fish and waterfowl. Up to 70 percent of the Mississippi Flyway population of black ducks can be found in the Lake Erie marshes during the fall migration.
- Ottawa NWR is within a 3 hours driving distance of 12 million people. The average visitation is 130,000 people per year. Visitors are welcome year-round from dawn to dusk. The office / contact station is open Monday through Friday, 8 AM - 4 PM. The refuge offers nine miles of hiking trails. Most of the trails are crushed gravel on level dikes. These trails pass along all of the habitat types available on the refuge, including wetland, native prairie, wooded areas, and open estuary. Throughout the year these areas vary in viewing opportunities. However, all provide excellent viewing of many species of birds including, shorebirds, warblers, raptors, waterfowl, and a variety of wading birds. In the spring, the refuge is a prime birding location as many songbirds stop here on their way north. The refuge offers an auto tour two days each year (weather dependent). These are on International Migratory Bird Day in May and during National Wildlife Refuges Week in mid-October.
Recreation - Activities include environmental education, interpretive foot trails, auto touring, photography, and wildlife observation. Hunting and trapping are allowed by special permit and fishing is allowed during the summer months at Cedar Point NWR.
Climate - This state has four distinct seasons and a brilliant fall foliage display in it southern woods during mid October. Winter lasts from December through February with average temperatures near 25 degrees F. Low temperatures dip to single digits, but do not often drop below zero. Northern regions of the state receive average snowfall amounts of 55 inches, while the central and southern regions of the state receive lesser amounts with averages near 30 inches. This difference is caused by lake-affect moisture patterns.
Spring temperatures begin to warm the landscapes of Ohio by mid March and are in full swing by April. Temperatures range from 40 through 70 degrees F through the spring months. This season often brings the most rainfall, before the drying heat of summer. Summer can be extremely hot and humid in the interior of Ohio. Temperatures reach above 90 degrees F frequently through July and August. Cooler fall temperatures don't reach the region until mid to late September. This is a pleasant time to visit as the air is crisp with low humidity levels. Ohio's annual precipitation usually reaches slightly above 50 inches.
The Ottawa NWR entrance is located 15 miles east of Toledo, Ohio or 16 miles west of Port Clinton, Ohio on State Route 2.