Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge
Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge encompasses some of Alabama’s last remaining undisturbed barrier habitats. The Refuge consists of approximately 7,000 acres of wildlife habitat lying directly west of Gulf Shores, Alabama on the Fort Morgan peninsula of south Alabama. The refuge was established by congress in 1980 to serve habitat for non-game birds migrating south in the fall and north in the spring. The migration paths from Bon Secour lead south to lower Florida, the Caribbean, Mexico and Central America. The refuge serves as a living laboratory for scientists and students. Likewise it provides wildlife-dependent recreation for the public.
Most importantly more than 400 species of birds have been identified and banded at the refuge during migratory seasons. The largest are usually ospreys and several species of herons. Even more interesting is at the other extreme, seven species of hummingbirds have been identified. Also present are mammals such as red fox, wild pig, coyotes, armadillos and bobcats.
Visitor activities include Wildlife Viewing, Bird Watching, Photography, Fishing (both fresh water and salt water), Boating, Environmental Education and hiking. Four trails provide over six miles to explore. An observation tower found on Pine Beach Trail is a great place to get an elevated view of Little Lagoon and Gator Lake.
Getting There . . .
Bon Secour NWR is located on the Fort Morgan peninsula, west of Gulf Shores, Alabama. From US 59, turn west on State Highway 180. Follow 180 for 8 miles, around mile marker 13, and the visitor center is located on the right. Along the way, there are directional signs for the hiking trails and for the office.
Visitor Center is Open 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. The Refuge is open to visitors year-round from dawn to dusk 7 days a week.