Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge

Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge protects one of the largest remaining expanses of tidal salt marsh in the mid-Atlantic region.
Headquarters Lottery Deer Hunt Application Period Open

Deer Firearms Headquarters Hunt for Preseason Lottery Drawing

A lottery drawing will be conducted for only the Headquarters hunt area. All other areas will utilize a tag board and sign in sheet for hunter selection.

- Headquarters Area Shotgun                Mon. Nov. 14, Fri. Nov. 18, * Wed. Dec. 14 [* = Antlerless Hunt]

  1. Only one application may be submitted by each person aged 16 & older.  Any person aged 17 & under must be accompanied by a person at least 18 years of age who is the lawful holder of a hunting license or has a lawful right to hunt.
  2. There is no fee for the application or the hunt.
  3. Application must be received at Bombay Hook NWR, or postmarked by:  October 3, 2022.
  4. Applicants selected will be notified, and those persons submitting more than one application will be disqualified.
  5. Successful applicants must sign in at the headquarters prior to 1½ hours before legal shooting time on the date reserved. 
  6. Disabled Hunters:  Write “Disabled” on the application.

Visit Us

National wildlife refuges offer us all a chance to unplug from the stresses of daily life and reconnect with our natural surroundings. Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge protects one of the largest remaining expanses of tidal salt marsh salt marsh
Salt marshes are found in tidal areas near the coast, where freshwater mixes with saltwater.

Learn more about salt marsh
in the mid-Atlantic region. The refuge, located along the coast of Delaware, is mostly marsh, but also includes freshwater wetlands and upland habitats that are managed for other wildlife. 

Location and Contact Information

      Bombay Hook NWR Partial Road Closures

      2022-2023 Hunt Season Partial Road Closure Dates

      Back part of refuge closed; Bear Swamp, Finis Pool.

      Archery: Regular Area Hunt (September 2, 9)(until noon)

      Muzzleloader: Regular Area Hunt (October 10, 12, 14)

      Shotgun: Regular Area Hunt (November 11, 12, 16; Antlerless December 12, 15; January 20)

      Front part of refuge closed: Raymond and Shearness – Enter Refuge on Rt. 9 at Dutch Neck Road

      Headquarters Area Hunt (November 14, 18; Antlerless December 14)

      About Us

      Bombay Hook was established in 1937 as a link in the chain of refuges extending from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico. It is primarily a refuge and breeding ground for migrating birds and other wildlife. The value and importance of Bombay Hook for migratory bird protection and conservation has increased through the years, primarily due to the management of the refuge and the loss of high quality habitat along the Atlantic Flyway. 

      Bombay Hook is a Ramsar Wetland of International Importance. Portions are also designated a research natural area research natural area
      The National Wildlife Refuge System contains 210 research natural areas (RNAs) that are part of a nationwide network of ecological areas set aside for both research and education. The areas "contain important ecological and scientific values and are managed for minimum human disturbance.” Recreation activities are allowed, but some RNAs may be closed to the public if incompatible with an individual refuge's primary conversation purposes.

      Learn more about research natural area
      . The refuge, a nationally recognized birding spot attracting birders from across the country, is designated a Globally Important Bird Area. The Refuge, as well as the entire State of Delaware, is part of the New England/Mid Atlantic Coast Bird Conservation Region Implementation Plan (BCR 30).

      Our Species

      A large raptor, the bald eagle has a wingspread of about seven feet. Adults have a dark brown body and wings, white head and tail, and a yellow beak. Juveniles are mostly brown with white mottling on the body, tail, and undersides of wings. Adult plumage usually is obtained by the sixth year. In...

      FWS Focus