Youth Fishing Day

Youth Fishing Day is coming up June 11!

Refuge Seeks Farming Bids

Eastern Neck National Wildlife Refuge is accepting bids for a farming opportunity on approximately 320 acres of the refuge for up to five years.

To be considered, applicants must fill out applicable portions of the Commercial Activities Application AND the Supplemental Application Instructions.  More information, submission instructions, and a sample agreement can be found in the announcement document.  

Successful applicants will be selected through an open and competitive process. Applications will be scored and ranked using objective criteria described in the application/bid form. Applications must be received by June 3, 2022, and applicants will be notified by June 10.

For more information, please contact Matt Whitbeck, Supervisory Wildlife Biologist at 410-221-2034 or

Eastern Neck National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) was established in 1962 as a sanctuary for migratory birds.
Hunting and Fishing Plan Available for Public Comment

The Chesapeake Marshlands National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) Complex is seeking public review and comment on our proposed hunting and fishing plans for Blackwater and Eastern Neck NWRs. The public is invited to review the draft document for our proposed changes, which includes the Draft Hunting and Recreational Fishing Plans, Compatibility Determinations, and Environmental Assessment. This document will be available for no less than a 60-day comment period. See the press release here.

The full draft is available for review at Draft Hunting and Fishing Plan for Chesapeake Marshlands NWR Complex. There will be an open house on June 9th from 4pm-7pm at the Environmental Education building at the beginning of Wildlife Drive at Blackwater NWR. This is an opportunity to discuss the proposed changes and to provide your comments on the draft plans.

The comment period will stay open for no less than 60 days after the publishing of the "2022–2023 Station-Specific Hunting and Sport Fishing Regulations," which will be announced in the Federal Register. If you wish to comment, please note "Chesapeake Marshlands NWRC" in the subject line of an email, and send to  Comments may also be provided at the open house, received by phone at 410-221-2034, emailed to, or mailed to Chesapeake Marshlands NWR Headquarters, 2145 Key Wallace Drive, Cambridge, MD, 21613.

Visit Us

The refuge offers wonderful wildlife viewing and expansive views of the Chester River and Chesapeake Bay along 7 different trails. The Visitor Contact Station, located in a historic hunting lodge, is staffed by volunteers and features exhibits about the habitats and history of the refuge, as well as a gift shop operated by the nonprofit Friends of Eastern Neck. Fishing is permitted at Tundra Swan Boardwalk, Ingleside Recreation area (closed seasonally), and Bogles Wharf. Hunters enjoy fall deer hunting and a spring youth turkey hunt.

Location and Contact Information

      About Us

      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 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.

      Our Species

      Although first set aside as a haven for migrating and wintering waterfowl, Eastern Neck National Wildlife Refuge is home to a wide variety of plants and animals. The refuge provides habitat for over 250 species of birds, including our national symbol, the bald eagle. In addition, many species of mammals, reptiles, amphibians, and insects find a home on the refuge.

      Bald Eagle

      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
      Zebra Swallowtail
      Jamaican kite swallowtail butterfly
      FWS Focus
      Northern Diamondback Terrapin
      Northern Diamond-backed Terrapin
      FWS Focus