Sportsman's ORV driving limitations
Due to the breach at Old Inlet, the sportsman's driving area is reduced to approximately 1¼ miles of the beach west of the Wilderness Visitor Center. Required permits may be purchased at this visitor center when staffed, for use through 12/31/2013. More »
New Backcountry Camping procedures
Reservations for required permits must be obtained through Recreation.gov. Due to the breach at Old Inlet, access to both east and west wilderness camping zones must now be from Davis Park or access points west, and involve a 2½ to 10 mile hike. More »
More than 30 species of mammals either visit or live within the boundaries of Fire Island National Seashore. These mammals range in size from finback whales and other whales— which occasionally swim close to shore or wash up on the beach—to the tiny masked shrew, which though rarely seen, is very common throughout the island.
Seventeen species of terrestrial mammals were identified on Fire Island during surveys conducted in 1974.
It's interesting to note that in the mid-1970s a herd of only approximately 50 white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) was reported to be maintaining itself on Fire Island, where they have no natural predators and are protected from hunting. Within a quarter of a century, that number had swelled.
Nineteen species of marine mammals—whales, porpoises and dolphins, and seals—have been recorded within the boundaries of Fire Island National Seashore. The harbor seal is a regular winter visitor at both Fire Island inlets.
Three species of endangered whales may occur in the waters offshore of Fire Island: fin whale (Balaenoptera physalus), humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae) and northern right whale (Eubalaena glacialis).
For More Information
Recent studies and inventories of mammals on Fire Island include:
Did You Know?
In 2014, America celebrates the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Wilderness Act on September 3, 1964, just a week before the establishment of Fire Island National Seashore.