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Visitor Activities

Boyscouts looking through binoculars
  • Hunting

    Hunting

    Hunting on the refuge is offered by refuge permit for white tailed deer. The limited shotgun season supports only stand hunting and the use of dogs is prohibited. Currently three hunt days are offered during mid to late November. Application costs are $7.50 and, if selected, a $10.00 single day hunt permit fee required.

    Hunters can apply for the hunt through Virginia’s Quota Hunt Lottery system www.HuntFishVA.com during the summer application period. 

    PRESQUILE Shotgun Quota Hunt (by Refuge permit only)
    Scout Date Oct. 26 and 27
    Nov. 18, Nov 29, Dec 2, 2014 


    Presquile Hunt Permit

    Presquile Hunt Regulations

  • Wildlife Viewing

    Wildlife Viewing

    Excellent wildlife viewing, particularly for eagles, osprey, and great blue herons, is available from all points of the water surrounding the refuge. Once on the island, the three-miles of trails and boardwalks further your observation opportunities to more terrestrial species- mammals, reptiles, and invertebrates. A fifteen foot tall observation platform supports high bluff views over the river and sweeping landscape vistas of the island.

    Please remember to keep a safe distance from wildlife as to not disturb them from their natural routines. Feeding of wildlife is strictly prohibited. 

  • Interpretation

    Interpretation

    The refuge offers numerous opportunities for the public to visit the island with US Fish and Wildlife Service staff as your guide. Four pontoon boat tours are scheduled (pre-registration required) to interpret the rich history of the Refuge and highlight the unique environment that so many species use. Additionally, two “Field Days” are hosted by the refuge each spring and fall. These special days provide boat access to and from the island throughout the day to visitors. The public can come and go as they please. The days are filled with nature walks, canoe trips, and special family programs.

  • Environmental Education

    Environmental Education

    The refuge has the great pleasure of serving as partner and host to the James River Ecology School. The School is administered through the James River Association, a 501(c)(3) watershed organization. This immersive environmental education program focuses on connecting students with the science that creates the wonders of nature. The School is operated out of the Menenak Discovery Center and the newly constructed bunkhouse. These facilities are merely staging areas, as the trails and outdoor interactive experiences are the heart of the School. For information on how to enroll in a class, please visit jamesriverassociation.org.

  • Photography

    Photography

    The refuge’s forested riparian habitat along the James River and interior creeks are used by bald eagles and osprey for nesting and perching. The tall trees extend prominently at the water’s edge and allow for excellent photographic opportunity. The birds are easily flushed, therefore zoom cameras are recommended. Eagles are observed throughout the year. Osprey typically migrate in late summer and return in early spring.

    On the refuge nature photographers capture shots of the tranquil landscapes of the island. To the keen observer the marsh boardwalk and water trail showcase a variety of frogs, turtles, and dragon-flies.

Page Photo Credits — Credit: USFWS
Last Updated: Aug 01, 2014
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