Franklin Island National Wildlife Refuge is a 12 acre island located in Muscongus Bay, six miles off shore from the Town of Friendship, in Knox County, Maine. Covered with spruce trees, raspberry thickets, rugosa rose, and various grasses the island once supported one of the largest common eider colonies in Maine.

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      We Are a Complex

      Franklin Island National Wildlife Refuge is part of a Complex which is comprised of five individual refuges which span the coast of Maine and support an incredible diversity of habitats including, coastal islands, forested headlands, estuaries and freshwater wetlands. The five separate refuges are: Cross Island, Petit Manan, Seal Island, Franklin Island, and Pond Island national wildlife refuges. Each has separate establishment histories and refuge purposes, but they are referred to collectively as the “Maine Coastal Islands National Wildlife Refuge”. Seal, Franklin, and Pond islands are single-island refuges. Cross Island Refuge is a six-island complex, while Petit Manan Refuge includes 64 islands and 4 mainland divisions, including: Petit Manan Point (2,178 acres), Sawyers Marsh (1,150 acres), Gouldsboro Bay (635 acres) divisions and Corea Heath (431 acres).

      The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service acquired the island in 1973 from the U.S. Coast Guard and established Franklin Island National Wildlife Refuge.

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