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Lake Shore Marshes Wildlife Management Area

Lake Shore Marshes WMA locator map

huntingtrappingicon for fishing showing a fish and a hookbird viewing areahike hand boat launchboat launchaccessibleparkingicon key

The primary purposes of Lake Shore Marshes Wildlife Management Area (WMA) are for wildlife management, wildlife habitat management, and wildlife-dependent recreation. This complex is composed of seven separate units bounded on the north by Lake Ontario and contains approximately 6,179 acres of wetlands and adjacent uplands. All of the area is available for public use.

Featured Activities



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


Wildlife Management Unit: 8F

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

During the hunting season, ring-necked pheasants, rabbits, woodcock, squirrels, white-tailed deer, and waterfowl are taken in good numbers. Muskrat and mink are common furbearers and provide trapping recreation. Please be sure to abide by all game laws (view hunting seasons and trapping seasons).


icon for fishing showing a fish and a hook

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

Fishing for smallmouth and largemouth bass, northern pike, bullhead, and panfish is popular.


bird viewing area

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

The area offers a unique combination of lake and bay marshes providing varied habitats for many species of fish, mammals, songbirds, shorebirds, and waterfowl. Black ducks, mallards, wood ducks, and teal are the principal waterfowl species along with a variety of diving ducks on the open water areas.

Because of its important bird habitat Lake Shore Marshes Wildlife Management Area was designated as a Bird Conservation Area. Other species of interest include: black tern (Endangered), pied-billed grebe (Threatened), least bittern (Threatened), northern harrier (Threatened), upland sandpiper (Threatened), American bittern (Special Concern), osprey (Special Concern), common loon (Special Concern), sandhill crane, sharp-shinned hawk, bobolink, eastern meadowlark, marsh wren, Virginia rail, sora, Wilson's snipe, magnolia warbler, golden-winged warbler, brown thrasher, and ring-necked duck.

Use both the Wildlife Management Area Vertebrate Checklist (PDF) and Wildlife Management Area Bird Checklist (PDF) as wildlife viewing guides.

Accessible Features


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

The Port Bay West fishing access site on the northern part of Port Bay has an accessible parking area, fishing platform, and hand boat launch. An accessible restroom is located nearby in Chimney Bluffs State Park (leaves DEC website).

Lake Shore Marshes WMA Brown Sign


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 Lake Shore Marshes 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 Lake Shore Marshes 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 Lake Shore Marshes Wildlife Management Area

wildlife restoration logo

Like most of the state's Wildlife Management Areas, Lake Shore Marshes 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.

Development has included the construction of small water impoundments and parking areas at scenic locations overlooking areas used by migrating waterfowl. Other developments consist of boat access sites and trails available to fishermen, hunters, hikers, and naturalists. Management objectives emphasize waterfowl utilization of this area.

View the Habitat Management Plan for Lake Shore Marshes Wildlife Management Area (PDF, 5.07 MB), approved in August 2017, which identifies the WMA-specific target species and habitat goals for the WMA.

Nearby State Lands, Facilities, Amenities & Other Information

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

State Lands & 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.