Contained within this 35-mile long barrier island is a rich abundance of plants and animals from both the subtropical and temperate climate zones. Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge is strategically located on the Atlantic Flyway, a major bird migration corridor, and it is a key resting stop for many migratory bird species. The refuge's habitats support one of the highest numbers of endangered and threatened species found within the refuges of the National Wildlife Refuge System. This unique relationship the refuge shares with NASA bears testimony that nature and technology can coexist.
- 358 species of birds have been identified on the refuge
- 140 species of freshwater and saltwater fish are known to use refuge impoundments, estuaries, and freshwater wetlands
- 15 federally listed threatened and endangered species call the refuge home