About the Refuge

Eastern Neck National Wildlife Refuge - USFWS.

The refuge was established on December 27, 1962 to be a sanctuary for migratory birds.


Eastern Neck National Wildlife Refuge is a 2,285 acre island providing habitat for thousands of wintering waterfowl including the tundra swan. Swans feed off of grasses in the river and narrows as do the 1,000s of waterfowl. Eastern Neck refuge supports a wide variety of habitats including brackish marsh, natural ponds, upland forest, and grasslands. The refuge holds the designation of Important Bird Areas by the Audubon Society. Over 240 bird species visit the refuge along with small mammals and many other wildlife species.

The refuge offers wonderful wildlife viewing and expansive views of the Chester River and Chesapeake Bay along 7 different trails. The Visitor Contact Station is staffed daily by volunteers. The wall of historic photographs is a priceless view into the refuge’s amazing history as a port for boats to drop off goods for the local area. Fishing is permitted at Tundra Swan Boardwalk, Ingleside Recreation area, and Bogles Wharf. Hunters enjoy fall deer hunting and a spring youth turkey hunt.

Eastern Neck National Wildlife Refuge brochure (pdf)
History of Eastern Neck Island brochure (pdf)
Chesapeake Marshlands NWR Complex Fact Sheet (pdf)