It forms the southernmost point in mainland Canada and is part of a bird and butterfly migration corridor over Lake Erie via Point Pelee and the Lake Erie islands. Over 360 bird species have been recorded in the park. The peak time for bird migration is spring, especially May, when tired migrants make first landfall after their journey north across the lake.
Many birdwatchers from North America and abroad visit the park in spring, often staying in the nearby town of Leamington. One attraction, apart from the sheer numbers and variety of bird passing through on migration, is the opportunity to see more northerly breeding species such as Blackpoll Warbler before they move on.
Point Pelee was made a national park in 1918 at the urging of birderss and hunters. Commercial fishing continued in the park until 1969. Point Pelee was the only Canadian national park to allow hunting until duck hunting was ended in 1989.