Pickett's Harbor Natural Area Preserve


This preserve is comprised of two tracts fronting on the Chesapeake Bay near Pickett's Harbor in Northampton County. The protected properties provide permanent protection for a highly threatened coastal natural area supporting rare species and high biological diversity on the Southern Tip of the Eastern Shore. The preserve contains exemplary beach strand and dune communities. The Pickett's Harbor Natural Area Preserve supports a population of the federally threatened northeastern beach tiger beetle. Behind the active dunes of the bayshore are stable Holocene dune ridges which support maritime scrub and woodlands.

This preserve provides habitats that are critical for migrating birds, particularly songbirds, and for the likelihood of maintaining viable populations of the northeastern beach tiger beetle. Migratory songbird stopover habitats are especially critical because such huge numbers of birds must find places to rest and feed within such small areas, or "bottlenecks", like the southern tip of Virginia's Eastern Shore. Breaks in suitable habitat such as croplands and lawns create dangerous areas which the songbirds must cross at risk of being preyed upon by raptors that are migrating along with them.


This preserve has no public access facilities. Access by arrangement with Steward.

Also, part or all of the preserve may be periodically closed for resource protection or resource management activities. Please call before visiting.

Contact Pickett's Harbor Natural Area Preserve

Dot Field, Eastern Shore Region Steward
Department of Conservation and Recreation, Division of Natural Heritage
Phone: (757) 787-5989


Service Area

Services provided in:
  • Northampton County, Virginia

To request additions or corrections to this entry email the Administrator