Elizabeth A. Morton
National Wildlife Refuge
|2595 Noyak Rd.
Sag Harbor, NY 11963
Phone Number: 631-286-0485
|Visit the Refuge's Web Site:
|The Refuge's beach peninsula is closed to public use April-August to protect the Federally threatened piping plover during their breeding season.|
Elizabeth A. Morton National Wildlife Refuge
Established December 27, 1954, through a donation by the Morton family, the 187-acre Elizabeth A. Morton National Wildlife Refuge boasts exceptionally diverse habitats including bay beach, a brackish pond, a freshwater pond, kettle holes, tidal flats, saltmarsh, freshwater marsh, shrub, grasslands, maritime oak forest, and red cedar. The refuge's diversity is not only critical to Long Island wildlife, but its picturesque quality is nothing short of an advertisement in a travel magazine!
Habitats along the beach attract many species including nesting piping plovers, roseate terns, least terns, common terns, and shorebirds. The waters surrounding the refuge are considered critical habitat for juvenile Kemp's Ridley sea turtles and are occasionally used by loggerhead sea turtles. Waterfowl use of the refuge peaks during the colder months. Long-tailed ducks, white winged scoter, goldeneye and black ducks will most likely be spotted during winter.
Much of the refuge is situated on a peninsula surrounded by Noyack and Little Peconic Bays. The north/south orientation of the peninsula makes the refuge important habitat for shorebirds, raptors and songbirds as they navigate the coastline during migration.
Getting There . . .
Sunrise Highway (Route 27) to Southampton, north onto North Sea Road (Route 38) for North Sea. Right onto Noyack Road and continue for 5 miles. Refuge entrance in on the left.
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The Morton NWR is managed to protect a unique natural area for migratory birds. Management activities for beach-using and nesting species include beach nourishment activities, erecting nest exclosures, protective fencing for both plovers and terns and patrolling during the nesting season to ensure visitor cooperation with beach closures in order to minimize harm to nesting wildlife. Federal and New York State designated endangered/threatened species which use the closed beach areas include piping plover, least terns, roseate terns, common terns, and osprey.
Other management activities on the Morton NWR include brush hogging grasslands, impoundment management, songbird and wood duck nest box program, and erecting osprey nesting platforms. Wildlife inventory activities conducted at the refuge include monitoring piping plover and tern nest productivity, waterbird surveys, and breeding songbird surveys.