This IBA represents unique habitat for this part of the state. It is a complex of remnant habitats of swamp forest along Marie DeLarme Creek (a tributary of the Maumee River) constituting one of the highest quality wetlands remaining in the former Great Black Swamp region of Ohio. It ranks with the highest quality forested wetlands in other areas of the state. It is possibly the largest forest in the county, and one of the larger and older stands of forest remaining in a several-county area of heavily agricultural Northwest Ohio. It is a statewide significant floodplain swamp forest-one of best floodplain forests in Ohio of mature canopy including upland and perched swamp forest. It harbors a high diversity of plants and animals, with unique terraced forest on the floodplain.
Bird records show statewide significant diversity and with even higher significance to Northwest Ohio. At least 148 species have been recorded in the woodlands. It is a significant nesting and migratory area for warblers and other forest species. Breeding bird survey conducted during the spring and summer of 2000 and Christmas Bird Count data from 2004. Two recent documented fall records of Kirtland's Warbler have occurred within five miles of Marie Delarme (M. & D. Dunakin). Kirtland's Warblers trickle down through western Ohio in fall, but in spring travel over southeast Ohio to the western basin. Also includes a heron colony, and adjacent farm fields have Bobolinks and Eastern Meadowlarks.
Marie DeLarme is a relatively large block of forest habitat (of high quality in portions) in a part of the state where most has been lost. Black Swamp Conservancy is adding protected land to the area. The preserve is home to 400 plant and numerous animal species. Some of the species are threatened or endangered, such as the four-toed salamander. Several state-listed plants are present, including lake cress and grove sandwort.