• Miles of uncrowded white sandy beaches extend to the horizon, separating the clear blue ocean and undulating grass-covered dunes.

    Fire Island

    National Seashore New York

There are park alerts in effect.
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  • Pet Restrictions in Effect March 15 through Labor Day

    Dogs/other pets (except for service animals) are not allowed in the wilderness or on any of Fire Island's federally owned oceanfront beaches from March 15 through Labor Day to help protect threatened and endangered beach-nesting shorebirds. More »

  • Backcountry Camping Permit and Access Procedures

    Reservations for required permits must be obtained through www.recreation.gov. Due to the breach at Old Inlet, access to both east and west wilderness camping zones must now be from Watch Hill or points west, and involve a 1½ to 8 mile hike. More »

  • Attention Watch Hill Ferry Passengers

    Due to channel conditions, delay or cancellation of ferry service between Patchogue and Watch Hill may occur. For updated ferry schedule information, please call 631-475-1665.

Nonnative Species

Common Reed can out-compete native species for habitat.

Fire Island National Seashore is a complex park with a number of historic and modern structures, landscapes, and natural areas, including wilderness and dynamic coastal dunes with accompanying vegetation.

Beyond the usual assortment of urban and rural pest issues, extensive populations of exotic invasive plants present an additional challenge. Invasive plants and animals often find their way into the park through neighboring non-federal lands.


The most prominent invasive plant species on Fire Island include:

  • Japanese Black Pine (Pinus thunbergiana)
  • Autumn Olive (Eleagnus umbellata)
  • Mugwort (Artemesia vulgaris)

The common reed (Phragmites australis) is very extensive on Fire Island, especially on the eastern end of the wilderness area. This plant, which can grow up to 20 feet high, forms dense stands by a network of roots and rhizomes. One plant can spread more than 10 feet in a single growing season. However, there may also be a native genotype of this species (Phragmites australis americana) on Fire Island, which would need to be identified and protected. Fire Island National Seashore has not yet implemented an inventory and management program for invasive common reed.


Invasive Plant Surveys on Fire Island

Learn More


Fire Island National Seashore has a monitoring program for West Nile virus and other mosquito-borne diseases through its mosquito surveillance and management program.

You can learn more about invasive plant species through the National Invasive Species Information Center.

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation also has various invasive species management programs.

Did You Know?

Group watching birds near marsh and trees.

You might get to observe a number of birds on a ranger-guided walk at the William Floyd Estate: a blackburnian warbler perched on a tree branch, a woodcock flushed from the fields, or a bald eagle chasing an osprey with a fish over the salt marsh! More...