Resource Management

Tree cage

Most of the mature bottomland hardwood forest once common in the Ohio River's floodplain no longer exists. The refuge is working to restore this important wildlife habitat by allowing nature to regrow the forest and by planting open areas with native trees. One of the biggest obstacles to this effort is the invasion of the islands by non-native plants such as Japanese knotweed, mile-a-minute, and multi-flora rose. Intensive control efforts, including the use of herbicides, are part of the refuge's land management strategy. Learn more about invasive species.

In addition to protecting islands, the refuge is looking at the potential for protecting mainland wetlands and embayments along the Ohio River. These critical habitats provide shallow-water feeding areas for wading birds, nursery habitat for many species of fish, shelter for wintering waterfowl, and other benefits.


Trapping Occurs on this Refuge.

Trapping is a wildlife management tool used on some national wildlife refuges. Trapping may be used to protect endangered and threatened species or migratory birds or to control certain wildlife populations. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service also views trapping as a legitimate recreational and economic activity when there are harvestable surpluses of fur-bearing mammals. Outside of Alaska, refuges that permit trapping as a recreational use may require trappers to obtain a refuge special use permit. Signs are posted on refuges where trapping occurs. Contact the refuge manager for specific regulations. Click here for more information.