Important Bird Areas

Roderick Wildlife Preserve - SGL 314

Pennsylvania

Located on the westernmost portion of the Lake Erie shoreline in Pennsylvania, at the Ohio border, this site includes 2.5 miles of lake front -- the longest stretch of undeveloped shoreline on the southern shore of Lake Erie.The steep bluffs on the lake shore are backed by gentle uplands laced with wetlands, streams, abandoned fields, second growth forest, and shrubland. Forty-nine percent of the site is wetlands. Aspen, American Beech, White Oak, Sugar Maple, and Silky Dogwood make up a majority of the forested area. Red and Silver maple grow vigorously in wooded swamps.

Directions: From Rt. 20, turn N onto Rudd Rd. approx. 3 miles E of Conneaut, OH.

{link:For fact sheet, click here|http://pa.audubon.org/Sites/Site2.pdf}

Ornithological Summary

The combination of wetlands, second growth and dense thickets make this one of the most important sites in the state for American Woodcock. Spring surveys have revealed a minimum of 100 birds in a relatively small area. The Game Commission actively manages the habitat for the species and is conducting research on Woodcock management, using this site as a control (hunting permitted). Occasional spring hawk flights of up to several thousand birds a day have been observed. More than 100 species have been seen in migration.Wetlands restoration is focusing on providing habitat for waterfowl, wading birds and other wetlands species.

Conservation Issues

This site is part of a 5,000-acre tract originally owned by USX (formerly U.S. Steel). It was acquired for protection by the Western PA Conservancy in 1989 and turned over to the Game Commission for management in 1991. It is managed as a part of the North American Waterfowl Management Plan. Trash dumping and general habitat deterioration were problems addressed by the Game Commission. Management has been for woodcock and game species; waterfowl nesting structures have been constructed and wildlife food plots have also been created. Hunting is permitted. Invasive species (e.g. phragmites) are ongoing management concerns. This area needs to be more extensively monitored for migrants and waterfowl on the lake. Increasingly surrounded by development, the site will likely become more important in the future as an "island" of habitat.

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