U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service logo A Unit of the National Wildlife Refuge System
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Big Boggy
National Wildlife Refuge

Two brown pelicans cavort in the water at Big Boggy NWR.
CR 262 (Chinquapin Road)
Matagorda County
, TX   
E-mail: Shane_Kasson@fws.gov
Phone Number: 979-964-4011 (Complex headquarters)
Visit the Refuge's Web Site:
Brown pelicans nest on Dressing Pt. Island
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Big Boggy National Wildlife Refuge
Big Boggy National Wildlife Refuge consists of flat coastal prairies, salt marshes, and two saltwater lakes. The refuge was establish in 1983 to protect habitat for migratory birds. Big Boggy includes Dressing Point Island in East Matagorda Bay; which is an important rookery for colonial nesting birds, including brown pelicans on the Texas coast. The refuge is the smallest of the three refuges in the Texas Mid-coast Refuge Complex. However, its 4,526 acres harbors an impressive number of waterfowl - up to 55,000 geese and 15,000 ducks annually.

Getting There . . .
The refuge borders Matagorda Bay, about seven miles south of Wadsworth and 20 miles from Bay City. From Brazoria, Texas, drive west on FM 521 to Chinquapin Road (County Road 262). Turn left (south) to Big Boggy NWR.

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Wildlife and Habitat

Big Boggy provides a mosaic of coastal marsh habitats ideal of wintering waterfowl. Roosting in the marsh and freshwater impoundments, snow geese often fly out to the farm fields surrounding the refuge.

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The Karankawa Indians once thrived on this land's rich bounty of fish and wildlife. Long before the first European settlers, they paddled dugout canoes along the coast between Galveston and Matagorda Bays.

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The refuge is only open to waterfowl hunting.

Recreation and Education Opportunities
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Management Activities
Several management activities are conducted at Big Boggy NWR to maintain viable habitats at the refuge.

Water manipulation at five impoundments are conducted annually to provide wintering areas for waterfowl. During drought cycles, the refuge may aquire water from the local irrigation district to provide quality habitat for migrating birds.

Controlled burns allow the refuge to regenerate forage vegetation, open areas up for use by wildlife, and control invasive plant species.

The refuge conducts habitat and wildlife surveys to determine the number of animals using the refuge and assist with habitat management planning.