Lake Mattamuskeet, NC (no inverts)


Old Timer
Dec 8, 2005
Last February and this past December, we took a trip out to Lake Mattamuskeet in eastern NC. This is a large, shallow, natural lake of 55,000 acres out on the coastal plain. The lake used to be 120,000 acres, but was partially drained in 1837 for farm land. Now it is part of a US Fish and Wildlife Refuge and home to thousands of migratory waterfowl and other birds during the winter.

Best months to go to see the birds are December and January. Bring binoculars, a camera and warm clothes. Other useful gear would be a telephoto lens, tripod and spotting scope.

Lodging available at the the riverfront town of Washington, NC, about 1 hour from the refuge. Washington has a nice little downtown with decent restaurants, a nice waterfront, and a nature museum on estuaries.

Also nearby is Bath, NC, the oldest town in the state.

The pictures - Not shown but seen were
American Coots
Various duck species which I no longer recall

This heron had caught a fish as long as my forearm. I thought that he would never be able to swallow something that big. After about 15 minutes of dipping it in the water and rearranging his grip, he swallowed it. Swallowing took about 5 minutes.

Nutria - these are about the size of a beaver. South American import now established in the SE.

Cypress Swamp


More Swans

Swans, Egret, Ibis



Island w/ Swans & Eagles


Bald Eagle