Grand Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve
Grand Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve Logo

Grand Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve

Reserve Information



Lead Agency

Mississippi Department of Marine Resources
(Visit Site)


18,049 acres


Jackson County in southeast Mississippi, bordering Alabama

Additional Information

Habitats for sea turtles, bottlenose dolphin, and manatees can be found in the deeper waters of this reserve. Oyster reefs and seagrass beds serve as nursery areas for important marine species such as shrimp, blue crab, speckled trout, and red fish.

About This Reserve

This reserve represents one of the most biologically productive ecosystems in the northern Gulf of Mexico. The habitat within the reserve supports rare and endangered plant and animal species, important marine fisheries, and archeological sites. The site encompasses black needle rush marshes, maritime pine forests, pine savanna, salt pannes and pools, and pitcher plant bogs. Many species of carnivorous plants and orchids are present in the higher savanna habitats.

The Grand Bay Reserve is one of 30 areas in the National Estuarine Research Reserve System. The site is protected for long-term research, water-quality monitoring, education, and coastal stewardship. Daily oversight is provided by the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources and other local partners. NOAA’s Office for Coastal Management provides funding, national guidance, and technical assistance.

Biogeographic Region


Tidal Range


Reserve Location and Boundaries