Seal Island shore - Glen Mittelhauser.

"Bed and Breakfasts" for the Birds

The refuge's islands are as individual as finger prints. Some support spruce-fir forests. Others are treeless, covered by shrubs and grasses. Still others are mostly bedrock, with little vegetation. Some combine the three. The various habitat types appeal to a variety of bird species.

In addition to seabirds, refuge islands provide habitat for raptors, wading birds, shorebirds, and songbirds. Some of the forested islands, including Outer Heron, Little Marshall, Bois Bubert, and Mink, have active bald eagle nests. Outer White Island supports a black-crowned night heron rookery. Migrating peregrine falcons stop on rocky Seal Island to hunt seabirds and rest. Warblers such as the bay-breasted and blackpoll, and shorebirds, including ruddy turnstones and semi-palmated plovers, rely on the islands as stepping stones on their long trips north and south.

Biological Summary of Islands within Maine Coastal Islands National Wildlife Refuge (pdf)