Dameron Marsh Natural Area Preserve

Description

This 316-acre preserve contains one of the most significant wetlands on the Chesapeake Bay for marsh-bird communities, and its pristine beach habitat is highly important for the federally threatened northeastern beach tiger beetle (Cicindela dorsalis dorsalis). At the park’s center, a large fallow field with scattered shrubs is a hotspot for foraging fall migrant songbirds and for raptors, including Merlin. The shrubs offer migrants a crucial re-fueling location as they pick the winged sumac and other bushes clean of fat-laden berries. Also look for a large diversity of fall migrating warblers seeking food and cover in the adjacent hedgerows.

Public access facilities include a trail and boardwalk, a wildlife viewing platform, and a small parking area. The viewing platform provides a lookout point over the preserve’s extensive salt marshes and the Chesapeake Bay. These marshes offer superb views of bald eagle, brown pelican, wintering waterfowl, and wading birds. A put-in site for kayaks and canoes is also available.

Please remember: Dameron Marsh is a Natural Area Preserve and, as such, contains sensitive natural communities. Respect this area by staying on designated paths, leaving pets in the car or at home, and not removing anything from the area.

Directions

Location Coordinates: 37.779995, -76.308004

From Kilmarnock, go north on VA 200 towards Burgess. Turn right onto VA 606. Turn left at the Shiloh schoolhouse onto VA 605. Turn right onto VA 606, and then left onto VA 693. Follow VA 693 into the preserve.

From the previous site on the Northern Neck Loop of VBWT:

From Vir Mar Beach, return to US 360 via Rt. 644/ Hacks Neck Rd. Take US 360 East for 0.2 miles and turn right onto SR 200. Travel 6.5 miles and turn left onto Rt. 605/Mount Olive Road. After 3.0 miles, turn left onto Rt. 606/Cloverdale Road. Proceed 0.4 miles and turn left onto Rt. 693/Guarding Point Lane. Continue for 0.3 miles and turn right onto a gravel road, which leads to the entrance at 0.4 miles.