Wertheim National Wildlife Refuge

Basic Information

Address: 340 Smith Road Shirley, NY 11967
Phone Number: 6312860485
Director: Ann Marie Chapman, Visitor Services Manager

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Wertheim National Wildlife Refuge
Wertheim National Wildlife Refuge
Wertheim National Wildlife Refuge
Wertheim National Wildlife Refuge

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Additional Information

Program History:

Wertheim National Wildlife Refuge is home to the Long Island National Wildlife Refuge Complex headquarters and visitor center. This 2,550 acre refuge on the south shore of Long Island is bisected by the Carmans River; a New York state designated scenic river and one of the largest on the island. Wertheim hosts a variety of habitats including oak-pine woodlands, grasslands and fresh, brackish and salt water wetlands. These habitats attract and support many types of wildlife including white-tailed deer, osprey, muskrat, fox, turtles, frogs and fish. The refuge also serves as a haven for waterfowl, shorebirds, raptors and songbirds.

Additional Information:

VISITOR SERVICES VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES:

  1. Visitor Center Greeter and Nature Store Volunteer (Wertheim National Wildlife Refuge) - The Complex's interactive visitor center will be standing in the dark without YOUR assistance! As a Visitor Center Greeter and Nature Store Volunteer, you will help visitors connect to refuge lands through a variety of recreational opportunities. Volunteers are needed to assist in operation of the Long Island National Wildlife Refuge Complex Visitor Center and Nature Store, located in Shirley, NY. If you like interacting with people, both young and old, this is the volunteer position for you!! Volunteer duties include: meet and cheerfully greet visitors; provide area and refuge recreation opportunity information; give orientations to the work of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Wildlife Refuge System; assist visitors with refuge rules and regulations; concisely explain the refuge entrance fee options; answer telephones; answer visitor questions; respond to visitor correspondences; distribute brochures; and restock brochures. These duties provide volunteers with the opportunity to reach diverse groups of people with a knowledge and appreciation of the environment and the National Wildlife Refuge System.
  1. Welcome Cabin Volunteer (Wertheim National Wildlife Refuge) - The Complex's interactive visitor center is a gem in its own right, but some visitors miss the quaintness of the west side of the river, with the old headquarters building and the Friends of Wertheim Refuge's Welcome Cabin. If you long for the quiet and beauty of overlooking the Carmans River, we invite you to share your passion with visitors walking to the White Oak Nature Trail. Volunteers are needed to work a two hour shift on Sundays when the new visitor center is closed but visitors are still welcome to walk the refuge trails. Volunteer duties include meeting and cheerfully greeting visitors while providing them with area and refuge recreation opportunity information. Sounds difficult? Not really because we will provide you with everything you need to know!! You will also be allowed to drive your vehicle to the cabin, eliminating the need to walk the half mile for the new center.
  1. Special Event / Community Outreach Volunteer (Wertheim National Wildlife Refuge and off-site) - During special events we host volunteers are needed to: staff a variety of education booths and children's craft activities; lead canoe and birding tours; direct parking; and ensuring the public has a great experience at the event. During community sponsored events volunteers will staff an information table to acquaint event attendees with the refuge units on Long Island and recreation. Dependability and ability to handle assignments required.
  1. Volunteer Photographer (Five national wildlife refuge units open to public) - Using volunteer's own equipment, take photographs of native flora and fauna. Close ups/Macro photos are preferred. Photographs will become property of U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and may be used for specific outreach materials.
  1. Photo Historian Volunteer (Five national wildlife refuge units open to public) - Using volunteer's own equipment, find a location at one of the five national wildlife refuges open to the public and take a photo once a week or month of the view. Compile these photographs into a yearly snapshot of each refuge.
  1. Marketing Assistance Volunteer (Wertheim National Wildlife Refuge and off-site) - These volunteers establish and maintain contacts with the media to enlist support through media coverage. Assisting with tours for media and community representatives to acquaint them with the refuge units. Extraordinary skill in dealing with people and enthusiasm for the refuge units, mission, and programs. Knowledge of social media and marketing techniques is a plus.
  1. Volunteer Speakers Bureau (Wertheim National Wildlife Refuge and off-site) - These volunteers present programs promoting the refuge units in response to community organization requests. Presentations are in PowerPoint format and are usually one hour in length, in the evening within the local commuting area. Exceptional public speaking skills, dependability and ability to independently handle assignments required.
  1. Volunteer Historian (Five national wildlife refuge units open to public and off-site) - Research history of previous land owners, land use and other important information for the five refuge units open to the public. Collect documents, photos and oral history for a variety of sources, including internet and local libraries.

MAINTENANCE VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES:

  1. Beach Cleanup Volunteer (Morton and Target Rock National Wildlife Refuges) - Assist refuge staff with litter pickup of local refuge beaches. Gloves, trash bags and snacks are provided.
  1. Volunteer Landscaper/Trail Maintenance (Wertheim National Wildlife Refuge) - Specific projects include: mow grass around visitor center once a week, mow grass in middle of trails twice a summer, weed the flowers beds around visitor center once a month, prune branches out of trails once a month, power wash front and back lobbies of visitor center twice a year, "weed eat" around the "You Are Here" panels along trails, pull vegetation from the see through boardwalks and along trails behind visitor center, pick up litter along Smith Road once a month, and redesign a purple martin bird house.
  1. Volunteer Gardner (Wertheim and Elizabeth A. Morton National Wildlife Refuges) - Maintain the flower beds in front of the visitor center at Wertheim Refuge and the pollinator garden at Elizabeth A. Morton Refuge. Research care of native plants, pull weeds, install plant ID tags, beautify the area, and provide interpretation of the garden(s) to visitors.
  1. Invasive Species Control Volunteer (Seatuck and Wertheim National Wildlife Refuges) - Purple foxglove is a biennial (two year growth cycle) herb/forb that is considered invasive across North America. Volunteers will assist with hand-pulling this invasive plant to help prevent its spread on the Refuge. Foxglove actively grows during the spring and summer months and can reach a height of five feet. The flowers are predominantly purple, while a few plants have white flowers. Flowers need to be removed as they are highly competitive with the surrounding vegetation. Much of their ability to compete comes from the numerous seeds that each plant can produce. Registration is required at least two days prior to the event; an advance volunteer count is important for work planning, locations, equipment/supplies, etc.

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