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North Landing River Natural Area Preserve
© DCR-DNH, Gary P. Fleming

North Landing River Natural Area Preserve


This is Virginia's largest natural area preserve. It is almost entirely comprised of wetland communities, five of which are rare in Virginia. Especially notable is the pocosin community, a habitat type that is fast disappearing from the southeastern United States. Pocosins are characterized by tangled masses of dense shrubs and vines with a scattered pond pine overstory. This unique wetland community and the forested swamps and freshwater tidal marshes of the lower North Landing River support at least 11 rare species of plants and animals. The area also provides important habitat for breeding and wintering waterfowl.

Notice: The Preserve is now closed due to increased illegal activity and DCR's lack of funding to support an Operations Steward to oversee this area.

[The preserve is open year-round;] facilities include parking, a boardwalk trail to the Alton's Creek canoe launch, a canoe trail with interpretive guide and map, wildlife viewing platform, and interpretive signs. The North Landing River, a designated state scenic river, provides excellent canoeing opportunities and breath-taking scenery.

[A preserve guide factsheet and map are available to assist in planning your visit.]

Part or all of the preserve may be periodically closed for resource protection or prescribed burning activities. [Please call before visiting.]

Virginia Beach
3441 acres
Darren Loomis, SE Regional Steward
Department of Conservation and Recreation
Division of Natural Heritage
Suffolk, VA
(757) 925-2318.