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Pinkham Island, Milbridge

Located in Milbridge, this 80-acre island is home to nesting bald eagles, foraging shorebirds, and other wildlife.

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Pinkham Island is good for:

Paddling – Two hours on either side of the high tide, enjoy a well-protected paddle to reach the island’s inviting shoreline for a secluded picnic.

Birdwatching – Marvel from a distance at the bald eagles that call Pinkham Island home, as well as the flocks of shorebirds feeding in the adjacent mudflats.

How to get there

The island’s shore is mostly rocky with one protected beach facing east. This is a good location for landing small boats around high tide. The nearest boat launch areas on the mainland are a hand-carry site off Rays Point Road and the Harrington Town landing on Ripley Neck.

Get directions from Google Maps Printable Preserve Map

For a complete map with legend and guidelines, click on the Printable Preserve Map above.

Notes on topography, flora, and fauna

The 80-acre Pinkham Island Preserve is located in Back Bay in the town of Milbridge. It’ s almost completely wooded with several small salt marshes, open headlands, and an old meadow. Recent blowdowns on the island have created a very thick regeneration of spruce-fir, making walking on the island difficult in places. Pinkham Island’s high point rises 40 feet above sea level, but the rest of the preserve is fairly level.

Mudflats surround Pinkham Island for all but a couple of hours on each side of high tide, when the preserve is a pleasant destination for picnicking, wildlife observation, and hunting. Be sure to watch the tides closely to avoid being stranded on the island. While there are no trails or other amenities, the immediate shoreline and adjacent woodlands can be explored on foot. During late summer and fall migration, the mudflats and shallow water are popular feeding locations for shorebirds. Please observe these migratory visitors from a distance.

Pinkham Island has had an active bald eagle nesting pair for many years, with one active nest on the southwest shore and one alternate nest on the northwest shore of the island. Public access to the portion of the preserve near these two locations is restricted from February 15 to August 15. The remaining portion of the island is open year-round.

How this place became open to the public

The preserve was purchased by MCHT in 2005 from a private landowner with support from a North American Wetlands Conservation Act (NAWCA) grant.

Preserve information/guidelines

  • No Camping permitted
  • Fires By Permit Only – Maine State Law
    • Contact Maine Forest Service at 1-800-750-9777 for permit
    • Keep All Fires Below High Tide Line – Do Not Build Fire Rings
    • Do Not Cut or Break Tree Limbs, Dead or Alive
    • Leave No Fire Unattended
    • Completely Extinguish All Fires
  • Carry Out All Trash
    • Including Human and Pet Waste and Toilet Paper
  • Keep Pets Under Strict Voice or Leash Control

Interests and Activities

More Downeast preserves
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