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Great Baehre Swamp Wildlife Management Area

Great Baehre Swamp WMA locator map

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The primary purposes of Great Baehre Swamp Wildlife Management Area (WMA) are for wildlife management, wildlife habitat management, and wildlife-dependent recreation. This 270-acre WMA is located adjacent to the Town of Amherst's Conservation Park. The area consists of nearly 260 acres of shrub swamp, emergent marsh, and open water wetlands and approximately 10 acres of brush and grassland.

The land was acquired in 1989 by the DEC with funding provided by the Environmental Quality Bond Act of 1986. As mitigation for wetland impacts, the Town of Amherst (under a stewardship agreement) built a 1,300-foot boardwalk through the area which connects state land to their neighboring town park.

Featured Activities

Trapping

Trapping

Wildlife Management Unit: 9C

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

Trapping is allowed within Great Baehre. Please be sure to abide by all game laws (view trapping seasons).

Wildlife

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

Deer, turkeys, black bears, squirrels, and a host of songbirds frequent the area. Use the Wildlife Management Area Mammal Checklist (PDF 453 KB) and the Wildlife Management Area Bird Checklist (PDF 240KB) as a wildlife viewing guide.

Great Baehre Swamp Brown Sign

Directions

From Interstate 290 West, take exit 6 and turn right onto Route 324. Turn left onto Hopkins Road and continue until you reach the parking area on the left at Billy Wilson Park (formerly Margaret Louise Park).

There is a paved Parking Lot and Boardwalk Trailhead (43.013962°N,-78.738852°W) - Get Google Map Driving Directions (leaves DEC website).

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

Rules, Regulations & 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 Great Baehre Swamp 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

Boardwalk area at Great Baehre Swamp WMA in summer
Boardwalk area at Great Baehre Swamp WMA

The following activities are not permitted in Great Baehre Swamp WMA:

  • Using motorized vehicles, including:
    • all-terrain vehicles
    • snowmobiles
    • motorboats
  • Hunting
  • Fishing
  • Swimming (no lifeguard on premises) 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 Great Baehre Swamp Wildlife Management Area

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Like most of the state's Wildlife Management Areas, Great Baehre Swamp is managed by DEC's Division of Fish and Wildlife for wildlife conservation and wildlife-associated recreation (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.

One of the principal management objectives for this WMA is to provide habitat for a variety of resident and migratory species and to permit compatible wildlife-related recreational use.

Nearby State Lands, Facilities, Amenities & Other Information

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

State Lands and Facilities

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.