Friends of the Savannah Coastal Wildlife Refuges (FSCWR)
is an organization of volunteers from coastal Georgia and South Carolina dedicated to preserving and protecting the seven National Wildlife Refuges in our area and the Refuge System as a whole. These refuges are managed by the United States Fish & Wildlife Service and are part of the National Wildlife Refuge System, which currently consists of more than 560 Refuges totaling about 150 million acres of land and water across the US, the Caribbean, and the Pacific.

     Founded in 2007 and granted tax-exempt 501(c)(3) status in 2008, we are one of more than 230 Friends groups affiliated with National Wildlife Refuges.  We are also an affiliate of the National Wildlife Refuge Association, a national group that advocates for the entire Refuge System.

What's New

August 24, 2016

The DASH has started!  The Coastal Celebrity Daring Adventure Scavenger Hunt (DASH) kicked off last week with 30 eager team members ready to start raising money for the Kingfisher Discovery Center.  There is still time to join or form a team to win a chance to participate in the Scavenger Hunt on Savannah National Wildlife Refug on October 15, 2016.

For more info contact us at  To donate, click on the "To Donate click here" button on the right.

For more info, read the Connect Savannah article from August 24.

August 11, 2016

After several weeks of being closed, Harris Neck NWR is open to the public.  This will be a partial opening again. Some trail closures are in effect. Please adhere to the trail closure signs. Woody Pond levee is open to the public for great viewing of the rookery.  The front entrance area is open with access to the fishing pier. Barbour River Recreation Area to include the public boat ramp is open.  Bluebill Pond Trail is closed (no access at this time). 

July 30, 2016

The Kingfisher Pond Discovery Center Project is ready to move into a new phase.  Our Advisory Board (chaired by Dr. Todd Cellini) has hired a fund-raiser to identify major potential donors and organize activities to raise money and get the word out about the need for the project.  We received a publicity boost today with a very nice article in the Savannah Morning News by Mary Landers.

Your contribution will help to make the Project a reality.

Watch this site for upcoming activities.

June 9, 2016

US Fish & Wildlife Service has announced that Harris Neck NWR will be closed to the public until further notice.  Unfortunately, the Refuge has been heavily impacted by the recent southern pine beetle infestation in Macintosh County.  Control of this parasitic beetle requires the removal of affected trees and those immediately surrounded them.  This will involve removing more than 250 acres of southern pine trees.  Contractors are now at the refuge removing trees, and it was determined that this activity posed a potential threat to visitors.  Follow the FWS website to find out when the Refuge will reopen.

March 31, 2016


Grant for Pinckney Island NWR Awarded to the Friends by Community Foundation of the Lowcountry


Press Release

Friends of the Savannah Coastal Wildlife Refuges are pleased to announce a generous grant of $37,000 from Community Foundation of the Lowcountry for Pinckney Island NWR Visitor Accessibility & Programs.  The grant funds will be used to purchase equipment including multi-passenger golf carts, bicycles, binoculars, and improved signage.  


As a result of the grant and in partnership with the Savannah Coastal Refuges Complex, there will be expanded programming for all visitors including the elderly, very young and mobility impaired.  You can look forward to guided nature programs for all ages many utilizing our soon to be purchased golf carts, bicycles and binoculars.   We will also be providing visitor assistance including water on very hot days.  


Please volunteer to help the Friends and Refuge staff improve visitor experiences at Pinckney Island NWR as a result of this grant.  We need Program Leaders (e.g. nature walks, birding, bike tours, children programs, etc.), Visitor Assistants, Publicity, Refuge Maintenance, Volunteer Coordinator and other support tasks. No experience is necessary, just a desire to support the refuge make it a more welcoming place for our visitors.

Email John Petraglia at if you are interested in volunteering.

“Work to make a living…volunteer to make a difference”

March 31, 2016


Congratulations to new members of our Board of Directors, elected at the Annual Meeting on March 31, 2016.


April Sutton

Walt Hoskins

Support the Building of the Kingfisher Pond Discovery Center 

During your end-of-year giving and tax planning, please donate to the Kingfisher Pond Discovery Center Project.

Consider purchasing KPDC shirts on our New Online Store.  

Click Here to Enter Store

Your purchase will raise awareness of the project and increase donations to move the project forward. All net proceeds will go to the KPDC Project.  You may also purchase the shirts at The Gator Hole in the Visitor Center at the Savannah Refuge.  

Major Boost to LWCF Funding Announced in Interior Spending Bill

December 15, 2015

House and Senate lawmakers reauthorized the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) for three years and set FY16 spending at $450 million in the FY16 Interior spending bill that was announced this morning, a major boost in LWCF funding.  >> Article

Friends of the Savannah Coastal Wildlife Refuges


Support the Friends

FSCWR receives no government funding.  Our activities are made possible by membership dues, contributions from folks like you, from sales at our book and nature store, The Gator Hole (at Savannah NWR), and from grants. 

      Please consider becoming a member or making a donation to enable us to continue our efforts in support of our refuges.  If your are a grant administrator or know of an organization that might be interested in awarding grants to the Friends, please contact Rick Shields at

Coming Events

Tuesday, September 06, 2016 10:00 AM (EDT) • Savannah Coastal Refuges Complex
Tuesday, October 04, 2016 10:00 AM (EDT) • Savannah Coastal Refuges Complex
Saturday, October 08, 2016 (EDT) • Blackbeard Island NWR
Saturday, October 15, 2016 10:00 AM (EDT) • Savannah NWR
Tuesday, November 01, 2016 10:00 AM (EDT) • Savannah Coastal Refuges Complex
Tuesday, December 06, 2016 10:00 AM (EST) • Savannah Coastal Refuges Complex

Recent Posts

Sunday, January 24, 2016 12:38 PM • John Petraglia
Thursday, December 03, 2015 8:47 PM • Rick Shields
Thursday, October 01, 2015 8:33 PM • Rick Shields
Monday, March 30, 2015 9:58 AM • Rick Shields
Monday, November 10, 2014 8:08 PM • Rick Shields
Sunday, November 02, 2014 10:21 PM • Rick Shields

Friends of the Savannah Coastal Wildlife Refuges, Inc.
PO Box 16841, Savannah, GA, 31416
Copyright 2016

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