About the Refuge


Tybee National Wildlife Refuge was established on May 9, 1938, by Executive Order No. 7882, as a breeding area for migratory birds and other wildlife, and to "effectuate further the purposes of the Migratory Bird Conservation Act." 

The majority of the 400-acre refuge is covered with sand deposits from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' dredging activities in the Savannah River. The more stable portions of the island are densely covered with such woody species as eastern red cedar, wax myrtle, and groundsel. Saltwater marsh borders parts of the island, and at low tide, the shoreline provides a resting, nesting, and feeding place for many species of migratory birds. Protecting and providing habitat for nesting shorebirds is the primary management objective of the refuge.

Due to its limited habitat, small size, and location at the mouth of the Savannah River, where ship traffic makes navigation treacherous, Tybee NWR is closed to all public use.