• Groups must make a reservation prior to a visit.
  • Hikers should stay on trails and boardwalks.
  • Dogs are not allowed in the Sanctuary Proper, but may be walked on leash at the Glendening Preserve.
  • Picnic tables are available at the Wetland Center, at Farm Point (River Farm; Sweet Flag Picnic Area) and near Plummer House (Glendening Preserve).
  • Smoking is allowed in parking areas only. No smoking on trails or in buildings.
  • Recreational hunting or fishing are not allowed in the Sanctuary. Anglers may fish by boat in Jug Bay waters.
  • There are no boat launching facilities within the Sanctuary Proper. Hand-carried boats may be launched at Patuxent Wetland Park on Route 4 at Hill's Bridge, near Wayson's Corner.


Limited Access

There are several reasons why the Sanctuary maintains a "limited-access" policy and is not open to the public at all times.

This policy was enacted in1985 to help maintain the integrity of sensitive habitats, and the plants and animals that depend on these habitats for survival. Additionally.......

  • Jug Bay is a sanctuary rather than a park. The lands here were purchased to protect the sensitive wetlands, other natural habitats, and the abundant wildlife found here. Habitat protection is our most important mission.
  • Public access is a management tool that can be used to help protect wildlife.  Too many visitors can inadvertently harm wildlife and habitats. 
  • The Sanctuary has a small staff of part-time and full-time employees to manage over 1,700 acres. Staff are not always available daily to greet and orient visitors.  On days when we're not open to the public, the staff plans educational programs, supervises students, analyzes research results, coordinates volunteer programs, repairs hiking trails/boardwalks, conducts workshops, and attends meetings or conferences elsewhere.  At times when we are not open to the public, there may be no staff on site. 
  • Our "limited-access" policy is patterned after the habitat protection policies of the Nature Conservancy and federal Wilderness Area programs.  Land conservation organizations that preserve and protect sensitive and vulnerable natural lands also limit public access.  For example, backcountry permits are required to enter remote areas of National Parks and Wilderness Areas.

Please help us protect the unique habitats at Jug Bay Wetlands Sanctuary!