Pickerel Creek Wildlife Area–Observation Deck
eBird Bar Charts by Season
Ohio Birding Day Hike
Pickerel Creek Dikes
Tips for birding Pickerel Creek Wildlife Area Observation Deck
An observation deck is open all year for viewing the abundant wetland birds and other wildlife. It is located along OH-6 on the north side of the highway, just east of Pickerel Creek and very near the largest parking area. Other accesses to the wetlands are several parking areas along the north side of OH-6 and also along the east side of the wetlands on TR-280. The best birding strategy for the area is to view it from the observation deck and by walking the many dikes throughout the area.
From Ohio Ornithological Society
Pickerel Creek Wildlife Area is a stop on the Lake Erie Birding Trail.
About Pickerel Creek Wildlife Area
During the spring and fall migrations, large numbers of waterfowl are attracted to the area. Mallard, wood duck, black duck, blue-winged teal, and green-winged teal are the most abundant species, with wigeon, pintail, gadwall, and shoveler appearing in smaller numbers. Canada geese also use the area. Other bird species include the trumpeter and tundra swans, common tern, great blue heron, great egret, black-crowned night heron, woodcock, snipe, sora, Virginia rail, and mourning dove. Bald eagles nest on the area and both adults and immatures are frequently seen year-round.
The geographic location of Pickerel Creek, along the southern shore of Lake Erie, also accounts for high numbers of songbirds, shorebirds, and hawks during the spring and fall migrations. Upland game animals and furbearers are also plentiful including cottontail rabbit, white-tailed deer, woodchuck, muskrat, raccoon, and mink.
Pickerel Creek Wildlife Area lies between the south shore of Sandusky Bay and US-6 in Townsend and Riley townships, Sandusky County. The area totals 3,200 acres. The majority of the area has been restored to wetlands with the remainder in woods, brush, and native grassland. Pickerel Creek flows through the western half of the area, forming a high-quality freshwater estuarine habitat.
The northern portion of Pickerel Creek Wildlife Area lies in the center of some of the finest wetland habitat still in existence along Sandusky Bay. Early records reveal an extensive wet prairie in this vicinity. Wild rice and other waterfowl foods grew in abundance in the clear waters of Sandusky Bay. As the surrounding land was cleared and drained for agricultural use, wetland habitat was seriously damaged. The turbid water no longer supported the huge beds of wild rice and other high-quality aquatic vegetation, and waterfowl numbers decreased.
The Division of Wildlife acquired Pickerel Creek Wildlife Area in 1987. Since this region continues to support a good waterfowl population, Pickerel Creek is presently managed as a public hunting, fishing, trapping, and wildlife observation area with emphasis on waterfowl and other wetland wildlife.
From Pickerel Creek Wildlife Area webpage
No restroom facilities.