Department of Environmental Conservation

D E C banner

Braddock Bay Wildlife Management Area

Braddock Bay WMA locator map

hunttrapfishbirdhikinghand launchboat launchwatchable wildliferestroomsaccessibleparkingicon key

wetland
Photo credit: Dana Hilderbrant

The primary purposes of Braddock Bay Wildlife Management Area (WMA) are for wildlife management, wildlife habitat management, and wildlife-dependent recreation. This WMA is a 2,125 acre parcel which was transferred in 1982 to DEC from the NYS Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation. This transfer did not include approximately 375 acres, which includes Braddock Bay Marina, Braddock Bay Park (day use area), and Beatty Point, which was leased to the Town of Greece.

Featured Activities

Hiking

hiking

General information on hiking includes how-to and safety tips and links to rules and regulations.

Please stay on the designated trails to protect the diversity and richness of the plant communities found within this area.

Hunting and Trapping

hunt
trap

Wildlife Management Unit: 8A, 8C

General information on hunting and general information on trapping include how-to and safety tips with links to seasons, rules, and regulations.

Shotgun hunting for deer is allowed in the WMU 8A portion, which is the Rose Marsh Unit, north of Manitou Beach Road, as well as the Bennett Road Unit. The entire complex is open to archery hunting. No waterfowl hunting in designated waterfowl refuges on Long Pond and Rose Marsh (posted with yellow and green signs). No hunting within 500 feet of a building. Please be sure to abide by all game laws (view hunting seasons and trapping seasons).

Fishing

fish

General information on fishing includes how-to and safety tips and links to seasons, rules, and regulations.

Wildlife

bird
Hawk
Photo credit: Sue Shafer

General information on animals includes links to information about birds, mammals, fish, reptiles, amphibians, and insects that inhabit or migrate through the state.

A hawk lookout has been conducted at Braddock Bay since 1975. These counts are conducted from two locations, the observation tower at Braddock Bay Park and the west spit. The peak of the hawk migration generally occurs in late April. Use both the Wildlife Management Area Mammal Checklist (PDF 453 KB) and Wildlife Management Area Bird Checklist (PDF, 240 KB) as wildlife viewing guides.

Watchable Wildlife

watchable wildlife

General information on watchable wildlife includes tips for viewing wildlife and links to other watchable wildlife locations.

This expanse of grasslands, marshes and open water, just west of Rochester on the south shore of Lake Ontario, is an important stop on the Atlantic Flyway for large gatherings of migrating raptors, waterfowl, and songbirds in the spring and fall. The geography here funnels thousands of birds to food, shelter, and nesting sites among the wetlands, scrub, and woods. Braddock Bay Wildlife Management Area has been designated as a Bird Conservation Area.

Wildlife to Watch

Where to Watch

  • Roadways provide easy access to the many trails
  • Boardwalk into the marsh
  • Wildlife blinds
  • Hawk-watch platform

Accessible Features

accessible
Observation Platform
Photo Credit: Jim Clayton

General information on accessible recreation includes links to other locations with accessible recreation opportunities and information on permits for motorized access.

Braddock Bay has some accessible trails and an accessible wildlife observation/fishing platform.

Directions

All Google links leave DEC website.

All coordinates provided are in decimal degrees using NAD83/WGS84 datum.

Rules, Regulations and Outdoor Safety

Practice Leave No Trace Principles (leaves DEC website) when recreating on state land to enjoy the outdoors responsibly; minimize impact on the natural resources and avoid conflicts with other users.

All users of Braddock Bay Wildlife Management Area must follow all State Land Use Regulations and should follow all Outdoor Safety Practices for the safety of the user and protection of the resource.

Activity Rules & Regulations

The following activities are not permitted in Braddock Bay WMA:

  • Unless specifically stated, using motorized vehicles, including:
    • all-terrain vehicles
    • snowmobiles
    • motorboats
  • Swimming or bathing
  • Camping
  • Using metal detectors, searching for or removing historic or cultural artifacts without a permit
  • Damaging or removing gates, fences, signs, or other property
  • Overnight storage of boats
  • Cutting, removing, or damaging living vegetation
  • Construction of permanent blinds or other structures such as tree stands
  • Littering
  • Storage of personal property

Outdoor Safety Tips

NOTE: Ticks are active whenever temperatures are above freezing, but especially so in the late spring and early fall. Deer ticks can transmit Lyme and several other diseases. More information on deer ticks and Lyme disease can be obtained from the NYS Department of Health (leaves DEC website).

How We Manage Braddock Bay Wildlife Management Area

wildlife restoration logo

Like most of the state's Wildlife Management Areas, Braddock Bay WMA is managed by DEC's Division of Fish and Wildlife for wildlife conservation and wildlife-associated recreation (hunting, trapping, wildlife viewing, and photography). Funding to maintain and manage this site is provided by the Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration or "Pittman-Robertson" Act, which is acquired through excise taxes on sporting arms, ammunition, and archery equipment.

The Braddock Bay Wildlife Management Area is a shallow water bay-marsh complex existing in five units along the Lake Ontario shoreline, ranging from two to six miles west of Rochester. Going westerly from Rochester, these units include Buck Pond, Long Pond, Cranberry Pond, Braddock Bay, and Rose Marsh. All of these ponds except Braddock Bay, are connected to the lake by intermittent channels. The channels plug and open up as lake currents and wave action change the character of the gravel and sand barrier bars.

This bay-marsh area provides excellent waterfowl nesting, resting, and feeding habitats. Puddle ducks, particularly mallards, blue-winged teal, and wood ducks are common nesters. During the spring and fall migrations, all waterfowl common to the Atlantic flyway utilize the area including scarce species such as brant, Barrow's goldeneye, and the Harlequin duck. The primary wildlife objectives for this area are to maximize waterfowl production and provide prime feeding and resting areas for migratory waterfowl.

Management will include level ditching to improve marsh interspersion and the establishment of grasslands and nesting islands to encourage waterfowl nesting. Other management activities may include erection of wood duck nest structures, controlled burns, purple loosestrife control, and waterfowl surveys. Future activities on the Braddock Bay Wildlife Management Area may include the construction of a fishing pier and additional parking areas and/or overlooks. Educational opportunities will also be expanded promoting the wetlands and their associated wildlife.

Nearby State Lands, Facilities, Amenities & Other Information

Web links below can provide information about other recreation, attractions, and amenities in this area.

Numerous guide books and maps are available with information on the lands, waters, trails, and other recreational facilities in this area. These can be purchased at most outdoor equipment retailers, bookstores, and on-line booksellers.

Additional information, outdoor equipment, trip suggestions, and guided or self-guided tours may be obtained from outdoor guide and outfitting businesses. Check area chambers of commerce, telephone directories, or search the internet for listings.

Consider hiring an outdoor guide if you have little experience or woodland skills. See the NYS Outdoor Guides Association (leaves DEC website) for information on outdoor guides.