A Safe Haven for Alabama’s Wildlife and Endangered Species
Named one of the 10 natural wonders of Alabama, the Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge comprises 7,000 acres on five parcels of land. Congress established the refuge in 1980 to preserve the coastal dune ecosystem and to protect threatened and endangered species along with migratory birds. The refuge is the last large parcel of undeveloped land on the Alabama Gulf Coast. It offers four hiking trails that range in difficulty from easy to strenuous and provides an up-close and personal experience for nature lovers.
The name Bon Secour is French and means “safe harbor,” a very appropriate name for this undisturbed piece of paradise. From sandy beaches and rolling dunes to wetlands with a dense growth of evergreens and deciduous trees, the Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge features a diverse habitat. More than 370 species of birds have been identified at the refuge during migratory seasons. The largest are typically ospreys and several species of herons. Four species of hummingbirds have also been identified in the refuge.
Mammals such as the red fox, armadillo and coyotes call the refuge home, as does the endangered Alabama beach mouse. Endangered sea turtles also use the sandy, unspoiled beaches for nesting from May to October.