Wolf Island National Wildlife Refuge occupies Wolf Island on the Atlantic coast, north of Altamaha Sound. The historic Darien waterfront has both a fishing pier and boat ramp. Darien is the second-oldest planned town in Georgia. Scottish Highlanders established the community in January 1736 under the direction of James Oglethorpe. Very few buildings in Darien predate June 1863 when raiding Federal troops stationed at nearby Saint Simons Island burned the town. Darien once was one of the busiest timber ports on the Atlantic coast, but the small communitys economy is now based on shrimping. Anglers visiting Darien will find boat launching facilities to serve as a starting point to exploring the Darien River and surrounding waters. Pier anglers can watch the shrimp fleet come and go while they try their luck for a variety of inshore species. Key species: spotted seatrout, red drum, croaker, spot.
Wolf Island, the largest island in the refuge, is defined by South River to the north, Little Mud River to the west, Altamaha Sound to the south, and the Atlantic Ocean to the east. The island consists of 4,519 acres, with only 300 acres of dune and beach along its narrow, 4-mile-long eastern shoreline. The island fronts the sea in the Altamaha River delta, and is a physical barrier between Doboy Sound to the north and Altamaha Sound to the south. The interior of the Holocene island, which is 97 percent Spartina alterniflora, is divided by many tidal creeks, including Wolf, Beacon, and Beach, where fishing is reputably excellent. Needlegrass, sea oxeye, and glasswort are also found in higher places in the marsh along with some small shrub hammocks, and salt flats cover the central marsh. Sea oats, sandspurs, smilax, and other beach-dune perennials flourish on Wolf Island's beach dunes, and higher ground supports scrub southern red cedar and wax myrtle.
Tucked into the mouth of Altamaha Sound directly south of Wolf Island are Egg and Little Egg islands, the two other islands in the refuge. They comprise 593 and 14 acres, respectively, and support extensive salt marsh with only 70 acres of upland. Egg Island has some oak and pine trees and is used by migratory birds, and Little Egg Island has shielded colonies of royal terns, black skimmers, and laughing gulls. Nearby, Egg Island Bar, closed by the state to human use, supports the largest nesting colony of royal terns on the Atlantic coast, with more than 9,000 pairs. It serves as a rare nesting ground for black skimmers, gull-billed terns, and brown pelicans as well.
Visitors must use a boat to reach the refuge, which is located 10 miles south of Darien between Doboy and Altamaha sounds. Marinas: Two-way Fish Camp has gas, hoist, bait and tackle, snacks, charters, and storage. Activities: Bird-watching, fishing.
Dates: All beach, marsh, and upland areas are closed to the public. Saltwater areas are open 7 days a week.
Small shrub hammocks, and salt flats cover the central marsh. Sea oats, sandspurs, smilax, and other beach-dune perennials flourish. Needlegrass, sea oxeye,,glasswort,scrub southern red cedar and wax myrtle.