Spotlight on Michigan
It’s shaped like a mitten—plus
the Upper Peninsula—and most
of Michigan is surrounded by
water: four Great Lakes (Erie,
Huron, Michigan, and Superior)
and the Detroit and St. Claire
rivers. That totals 3,000 miles of
freshwater shoreline, more than
any other state. Only Alaska has
a longer shoreline (saltwater).
Forests occupy 20 million of
Michigan’s 36 million acres, mak-
ing it one of the most forested
states in the country, and 40
percent of that forest is open for
public use. At 3. 9 million acres,
Michigan boasts the largest state
forest system in the U.S., plus
more than 100 state parks and
recreation areas, three national
forests, three national parks, and
two national wildlife refuges.
That’s a lot of habitat for birds
and other wildlife. The Michigan
Bird Records Committee touts
446 species on its checklist.
For more on birding in the
UP, see page 98.
• Official Michigan Bird
• Michigan Birding Trails:
• Unofficial Michigan birding
• Michigan Audubon:
Editor’s note: Thanks to reader
Sally Woodall for suggesting the
new name of this column.