TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) — The Green Bay National Wildlife Refuge is growing significantly with the addition of acreage on two islands in northwestern Lake Michigan.
Rocky Island and most of St. Martin Island are being added to the refuge. Both serve as stopover habitat for birds that fly over the Great Lakes during spring and fall migration. St. Martin also hosts more than 400 plant species, including the federally threatened dwarf lake iris.
The Nature Conservancy bought the majority of St. Martin Island in recent years. Ten-acre Rocky Island was donated to the conservancy in 1986.
Together, they boost the Green Bay refuge by 1,290 acres. It also includes Plum, Pilot and Hog islands.
The islands are part of the Grand Traverse chain, which extends from Wisconsin’s Door Peninsula to Michigan’s Garden Peninsula.