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Bois Blanc Island


  • Legally Dedicated Natural Areas (3)
  • The Nature Conservancy Natural Areas Registry (1)


  • Mixed Forest - 968 acres
  • Northshore - 817 acres
  • Snake Island/Mud Lake - 244 acres

Location: Northeast and southeast shores of Bois Blanc Island, in the Straits of Mackinac

Management: Mackinaw State Forest

Activities: Hiking, wildlife viewing, cross-country skiing, photography, hunting, non-motorized fishing, bird watching, wildflower viewing

Importance: The Mixed Forest and Northshore areas consist largely upland hardwood forest with moderate-size white birch and sugar maple, which will develop into an excellent mature forest stand, given time. They provide habitat for several species of special concern, including the dwarf lake iris, bald eagle, and a population of Douglas's hawthorn that is disjunct from populations in the western U.S. The Northshore Natural Area also contains some fine areas of large, old growth hemlock and white pine and has a beautiful natural strip of Great Lakes shoreline, with a variety of shoreline types.

The Snake Island/Mud Lake area contains a portion of pristine Lake Huron shoreline, including cobble beaches. The inland dune and swale topography reflects historic lake levels and results in swamps, marshes, and ponds separated by gravelly, forested ridges. Dwarf lake iris, a federal and state threatened plant, can be viewed in the area. A colony of herring gulls inhabits Snake Island, osprey feed at Mud Lake, and the area also has extensive and quite old beaver workings.