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  • At-a-Glance
  • What to Look For
  • Noteworthy Rarities
  • Natural Features
  • Local Resources
  • 87 - Oak Openings Preserve

    Metroparks of the Toledo Area
    4139 Girdham Road
    Swanton, OH 43558

    419.826.6463

    Public Access

    Open daily, 7 a.m. to dusk

    Amenities

    Hiking Trails, Restrooms, Visitors Center, Checklist Available, Picnic Area, Equestrian Trails, Wildlife Observation Window, Handicap Accessible Trails, Sightings Board, Group Camping Available

    GPS Coordinates

    N 41° 33'45.82"; W 83° 51'14.29"

    Driving Directions

    The park is located two miles west of Toledo Express Airport in Swanton with entrances off Wilkins Road, SR 64 and SR 2.

    What to Look For

    The park encompasses nearly 5,000 acres of the richest biodiversity found in northwest Ohio. A staggering number of state-listed rare plants and animals are gound within the park; a greater density of rarities than any other site in Ohio. A number of breeding birds hard to find elsewhere in this region occur, such as Eastern Whip-poor-will, Broad-winged Hawk, Blue-headed Vireo, Red-breasted Nuthatch, Brown Creeper, Cerulean and Kentucky warblers, Louisiana Waterthrush, and Summer Tanager. Old stand of planted red and white pine have supported nesting Golden-crowned Kinglets, and often harbor Pine Warbler. Successional fields can host Blue-winged and Prairie warblers, and Yellow-breasted Chat. Spectacular raptor movements pass over the park in fall migration, including large numbers of Broad-winged Hawks and other buteos and accipiters, and a few Golden Eagles.

    Noteworthy Rarities

    The park and vicinity supports Ohio's only reliable population of breeding Lark Sparrows. Look for them along Girdham Road, south of Monclova Road. There has been a territorial Clay-colored Sparrow in this area before, as well. Blue Grosbeaks sometimes summer in larger meadows, and Canada and Mourning warblers have nested locally. The park can also be good for winter finches and other boreal irruptives, and there is a 2008 record of Pine Grosbeak.

    Natural Features

    The metropark is a hotbed of rare plant species and a botanist's dream. The dry sandy blowouts, such as along Gridham Road, support many rarities including wild lupine (Lupinus perennis) and plains puccoon (Lithospermum caroliniense). Scads of interesting butterflies and dragonflies can be found, and noteworthy snakes include the blue racer.