About Dawson Shoals
Dawson Shoals is a dynamic sand island that changes in shape and size following major storms events. It is void of vegetation and in the summer can support hundreds of nesting seabirds. Its close proximity to the mainland makes it a popular destination for visitors, and managers aim to balance recreational use with the protection of the breeding birds. Before visiting, please familiarize yourself with site use policies and obey the seasonal signage.
Dawson Shoals is part of a vast system of ungranted state lands that is owned and managed by the Virginia Marine Resources Commission (VMRC). During the bird breeding season, VMRC and the Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources (DWR) share in the management of nesting seabirds and shorebirds. Dawson Shoals is open year round to the public for bird watching, photography, primitive camping and fishing. Please help protect this sensitive habitat and the birds that nest there by observing all visitation policies and seasonal signage.