The Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge was established in 1933 as a waterfowl sanctuary for birds migrating along the critical migration highway called the Atlantic Flyway. The refuge is located on Maryland's Eastern Shore, just 12 mi (19 km) south of Cambridge, Maryland in Dorchester County, and consists of over 28,000 acres (110 km2) of freshwater impoundments, brackish tidal wetlands, open fields, and mixed evergreen and deciduous forests. Blackwater NWR is one of over 540 units in the National Wildlife Refuge System, which is managed by the United States Fish and Wildlife Service.Put Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge on your schedule, and learn what else deserves a visit by using our Cambridge road trip site.
Blackwater Refuge is fed by the Blackwater River and the Little Blackwater River. The name "blackwater" comes from the tea-colored waters of the local rivers, which are darkened by the tannin that is picked up as the water drains through peat soil in the marshes.
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Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge reviews
Blackwater is a national treasure and we highly recommend a visit. We saw nearly a dozen bald eagles over a few days along with many other birds. It is peaceful and serene with great hiking trails. more »
Great place to see multiple eagle pairs and juveniles. Friendly to birding with multiple options to pull over and get out of the way. We saw migrating water foul, ospreys, herons, egrets, muskrats... more »
On our tenth visit to the Blackwater refuge, we found the landscape unchanged but wonderful new wildlife encounters. It was in early March, so there were few migrating birds to be found besides a... more »
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