Wildlife Observation and Photography
Wildlife observation, especially birdwatching, is excellent throughout the year on Blackbeard Island. In winter months, waterfowl utilize the marshland and man-made freshwater pools, while songbirds abound in the wooded acres in the spring and fall. The existing trails and roads provide hikers and bicyclers with scenic paths ideal for nature study.
Environmental Education and Interpretation
Guided interpretive tours for individuals and families can be arranged through our special use permit holders (fees may apply). These are private, commercial or non-profit organizations that maintain a permit with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in order to conduct business on the refuge. Click here for a list of authorized interpretive tour guides.
If you'd like to visit Blackbeard Island NWR and don't mind doing a little work in exchange for the trip, sign up for a beach sweep litter patrol with volunteer group Clean Coast. Find out more about them on their web page at www.cleancoast.org.
Hunting and Fishing
Two, three-day deer hunts are scheduled in the fall and winter every year. Both hunts are non-quota, archery hunts, and feral hogs may be taken, as well as deer, on each. Hunters must carry a signed hunt permit with them at all times during the hunts, as well as all required state licenses. Click here to download refuge hunt regulations and permit.
The saltwater creeks which pass through refuge marshland are open to fishing the entire year, however, freshwater fishing from any source on the refuge is prohibited.
**Blackbeard Island NWR is accessible only by boat, and the Fish and Wildlife Service does not provide transportation. Visitors must make their own transportation arrangements (this includes hunters). For those visitors who have their own boat, a public boat ramp on Harris Neck NWR (Barbour River Landing) may be used as a launching site for trips to the island. For others, we try and keep an updated list of local charter outfits that provide boat transportation to our island refuges. Keep in mind, however, that these types of businesses come and go, therefore our list may not always be current, and you may have better luck conducting your own search. Click here to download the charter services list.