About This Reserve
The Connecticut National Estuarine Research Reserve protects a large area of the Long Island Sound (including parts of Fisher’s Island Sound), one of Connecticut’s most important natural resources; portions of the lower Thames River; and portions of the lower Connecticut River, which contains the highest fish diversity in the region, with 78 species—such as Atlantic salmon, and the endangered shortnose and Atlantic sturgeon—and includes areas recognized as “wetlands of international importance” by the Ramsar Convention. In addition, this reserve includes the following natural area preserves and state parks: Lord Cove Natural Area Preserve, Roger Tory Peterson Natural Area Preserve, Bluff Point State Park/Coastal Reserve/Natural Area Preserve, and Haley Farm State Park.
The Connecticut Reserve is one of 30 reserves in the National Estuarine Research Reserve System that are protected for long-term research, water quality monitoring, education, and coastal stewardship. The reserve is managed by the University of Connecticut in close partnership with the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection. NOAA’s Office for Coastal Management provides funding, national guidance, and technical assistance.