Welcome to Spring Sunset Walk




Location: Fire Island National Seashore William Floyd Estate | Map

Time: 4:30 PM to 7:30 PM

Fee Information: Free program

Contact Phone Number: 631-687-4780 (weekdays), 631-281-3010 (weekends)

Celebrate the first full day of spring and savor daylight till the sun sets on this three (3) mile round-trip hike to the wilderness breach. Subtle signs of the season are yours to discover and enjoy as Fire Island’s plants and wildlife spring into activity after the long cold winter. Park at Smith Point County Park and follow the path west to the Wilderness Visitor Center. Be prepared for walking in sand.

In just one minute, you can change the fate of hundreds of deer on Fire Island. Please tell the National Park Service that you support the use of non-lethal fertility control methods.

Save Deer In A New York Minute

White tail fawn

White-Tailed Fawn

Dear Friend,
For years, we have worked with the National Park Service (NPS) and local residents to implement a successful fertility control study to help the NPS manage deer populations on Fire Island National Seashore.

Instead of expanding this effective and widely supported program, the NPS recently released a deer management plan for Fire Island that calls for the killing of hundreds of semi-tame animals who have peacefully coexisted with residents for decades.

We need your help to prevent this unnecessary lethal control. Please take one minute to tell the NPS that you strongly support the use of effective, non-lethal fertility control methods for deer on Fire Island»

You can copy and paste the following into the contact form to start off your letter:

I’ve recently learned that the National Park Service has released its Draft Environmental Impact Statement/Deer Management Plan for Fire Island National Seashore. For more than 15 years, The Humane Society of the United States has worked with the NPS to implement a fertility control study using humane methods to manage deer population. The study has been widely supported and successful. The NPS should continue working with organizations like The HSUS and Fire Island residents to implement humane deer management strategies rather than killing semi-tame deer, who are a cherished part of the visitor experience at Fire Island.

Thank you,
Wayne Pacelle
Wayne Pacelle, President & CEO – Humane Society of the United States

Please cut a paste the link below to National Park Service-PEPC-Fire Island National Seashore Draft White-tailed Deer Management Plan:


We have the support of Vincent Palmer, the NYSDEC Commissioner; NYS Senator Phil Boyle; and Betsie Wintenberger, Robert Moses State Park Superintendent.

White Tailed Deer on Fire Island

White Tailed Deer on Fire Island

Fire Island National Seashore Turns 50!

Fire Island National Seashore

Patchogue, New York – Fire Island National Seashore (FINS) celebrates its 50th birthday this year. The Seashore, established in 1964, will kick off a year-long celebration of this special anniversary in September. Anniversary events include a “Fifty Years of Fire Island” Lecture Series, special programming and exhibits, a FINS employee alumni reunion, and a closing celebration to be held on Fire Island and in gateway communities on Long Island.

“Fire Island’s dynamic coastal landscape is fundamental to why the park was established, but it’s the way people interact with that landscape that makes Fire Island so special,” said Fire Island National Seashore Superintendent Chris Soller. “We hope Fire Island visitors and residents will play an important role in the Seashore’s anniversary celebration, just as they played an important role in the establishment of the Seashore and its first fifty years.”

Upcoming 50th anniversary events scheduled for September include:

–September 18: Fire Island National Seashore Superintendent Chris Soller opens the Fifty Years of Fire Island Lecture Series with an hour-long presentation, “Managing the Dynamic Landscape of Fire Island” at the Patchogue-Watch Hill Ferry Terminal at 7:00 pm.

–September 20: Fire Island National Seashore Employee Alumni Reunion

–September 21: Fire Island (Images of Modern America) book signing. Author Shoshana McCollum will discuss the making of her new book and sign copies at the Fire Island Lighthouse Fresnel Lens building from 2:00 to 3:00 pm.

–The “Fifty Years of Fire Island” Lecture Series will continue with weekly presentations through November, 2014, and will then resume in spring 2015. The closing celebration for the year-long 50th anniversary commemoration is scheduled for September, 2015. For more information please visit www.nps.gov/fiis/planyourvisit/fire-island-50.

About the National Park Service: More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America’s 401 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Learn more at www.nps.gov.

Fire Island National Seashore encompasses 26 miles of ocean and bay shoreline, lush backdunes, maritime forests and residential communities on Fire Island, a barrier island situated south of Long Island, New York. Fire Island’s dynamic coastal landscape is home to a diversity of plants and wildlife and offers a retreat from nearby metropolitan New York. For more information, please visit www.nps.gov/fiis.

Contact: Elizabeth Rogers, 631-687-4766
Contact: Kaetlyn Kerr, 631-687-4766



FHCA: FI National Seashore Deer Management Plan — IMPORTANT

Please see the attached information regarding FINS Deer Management Plan.
Deer on Fire Island is an issue most people have feelings about, one way or the other. The options listed as part of the plan range from the extremely benign to extremely aggressive. Chris Soller has asked that everyone take a moment to go to the site, review the plans, and comment. It is important when you recognize that the people who respond to most issues are the extremists. It is important to get as much feedback as possible in an attempt to represent the views of the majority on this issue.
Thanks in advance for participating in this decision through your comments

(Due by Oct.10).

photo: ellen s. abramowiz

Deer striking for a pose in Dunewood — photo: ellen s. abramowiz

Here is a synopsis of the plans, but be sure to read the plans in full at the web site Cut and paste the links for the plans below:  

Plan A: No action other than what’s currently being done — Current actions include limited public education and interpretation efforts, vegetation monitoring, and deer population and behavior surveys.

Plan B: Fencing the William Floyd Estate, relocation of deer approaching humans, and fertility control for female deer
Plan C: Deer population reduction and maintenance through a combination of sharpshooting, capture and euthanasia of individual deer (where necessary), and public hunting (within the Fire Island Wilderness only). Deer observed approaching humans would be captured and euthanized to prevent other deer from learning this behavior through observation.
Plan D: Plan C plus public hunting and, once reduced, the deer population could be maintained through fertility control or a continuation of actions used for direct reduction.

To read about the plans go to:


To comment.


Or mail your comments to: Lindsay Ries, Wildlife Biologist, Fire Island National Seashore, 120 Laurel Street. Patchogue, NY 11772

Piping Plover Lawsuit Stalls Fire Island Dune Rebuilding

Piping Plovers are on the endangered species list.

Piping Plovers are on the endangered species list.

Officials are lashing out at an environmental group whose lawsuit stalled a plan to rebuild Sandy-flattened Fire Island dunes after activists argued that the $207-million federally funded project could harm endangered birds.

Judge Sandra Feuerstein granted Friday the Audubon New York’s request for a temporary restraining order in the nonprofit group’s federal lawsuit against the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, two agencies involved in the plan, effectively barring the project’s managers from starting the work—for now.

“They are asserting that habitat protection trumps the safety and security of the residents living in Mastic Beach and other low-lying South Shore communities,” Rep. Tim Bishop (D-Southampton), who has been pushing for the project, said in a statement. “This is a position I simply cannot support. I believe the action of Audubon New York in this instance, particularly as the dredging contract was about to be awarded, is indefensible.”

The group claims in their lawsuit that rebuilding dunes at parts of Smith Point County Park and Fire Island Lighthouse Beach—less than three miles of the 19 miles eyed in the Fire Island Inlet to Moriches Inlet Stabilization Project [FIMI]—disrupts rare nesting areas essential to the survival of the piping plover. The judge’s order does not block planners from planning the more complex third phase of the project in the residential middle section of the 32-mile barrier island.

“The FIMI Project as currently designed is in violation of federal law,” Erin Crotty, executive director of Audubon New York, said in a statement. “Audubon New York has consistently called for an improved plan that protects coastal communities while ensuring the continued survival of the state endangered and federally threatened Atlantic Coast piping plover.”

Although the 7-inch-long, sand-colored shorebirds had a 24-percent population increase in the New York-New Jersey area between 1989 and 2013, the population dropped 32 percent from a peak of 586 pairs in ’07 to 397 last year.

Studies have found that piping plover populations historically rebound after storms flatten out beaches. Audubon New York argues that the already declining endangered bird species populations would be further decimated by 13-foot dunes that it argues piping plover chicks are unable to climb in order to comb the beach for food.

Suffolk County Legis. Tom Cilmi (R-Bay Shore) asked Sunday his Facebook friends to “LIKE and SHARE if you think this is absurd.” The post got 37 likes and 13 shares.

Suzy Goldhirsch, president of the Fire Island Association, a nonprofit group representing the 17 communities that dot the beach, had warned homeowners at a July meeting that a lawsuit was possible.

“I don’t feel it’s warranted,” she said. “But, this is America, anybody can sue for anything.”

by Timothy Bolger on September 15, 2014 – Long Island Press

Piping Plover (Charadrius Melodus)

Since many of us have never seen a Piping Plover (Charadrius Melodus) here is picture with a description:
A pale shorebird with orange legs the color of dry beach sand. It weighs 1.5 to 2.25 ounces (43-64 gm) and is 5.5 inches (14 cm) long. In spring and summer, it sports a single black neck band and a narrow black band across its forehead. In flight, the rump is white. The bill is yellowish with a black tip.

Piping Plover

The piping plover, a stocky sand-colored shorebird, nests on Fire Island National Seashore beaches. The Atlantic coast population of piping plovers breeds from Virginia to Canada. All piping plovers return to the southern Atlantic Coast, Gulf Coast, Bahamas, or West Indies for the winter.

Piping Plover Biology:
Piping plover courtship and mating usually occurs from late March through early June. Following courtship, the female bird lays three to four speckled eggs resembling small pebbles in a shallow scraped depression in the sand. Tiny piping plover chicks hatch about 28 days later.

For their first four weeks of life, piping plover chicks may wander hundreds of yards from the nest site, usually staying with one or both parents until they fly for the first time. Plovers generally fledge only a single brood per year, but may re-nest if previous nests are lost, or if the chicks are lost within a few days of hatching.

Piping Plovers Blend In:
Piping plovers nest on the sand and travel to the wrack line, or high tide line, and the water’s edge to forage for tiny crabs and other marine invertebrates. Part of this stocky shorebird’s defense against natural predators is camouflage – its sand-colored plumage and eggs blend in with the beach environment. This also means that is can be hard for us to see them.

Fire Island National Seashore’s piping plover monitoring and protection program begins in March with a restriction on driving, pets, and kites on portions of the beach.

We Can Help:

Respect fenced areas and stay clear of bird nesting areas. Where they are permitted, always keep dogs leashed.

Piping Plover Monitoring and Management is part of Fire Island’s T & E species protection program.

FROLYC – 2014

A Labor Day Weekend Tradition

FROLYC aka First Royal Old Lonelyville Yacht Club. This Regatta is around East Island. Racers choose to begin their race by going East or West.

30 Sunfish Participated in the 2014 Regatta

The 2014 Commodores were Ellen Abramowitz & Gloria Perna


Part of the Commodores responsibility is to create new Frolyc trophies for each boat that participates in the regatta. Designs may not be repeated from a prior year.

Frolyc Trophies by: Ellen Abramowitz & Gloria Perna – Commodores 2014. *They float too.

A bit of Dunewood lore: This banner was presented to Murray & Lillian Barbash by the Lonelyville contingent at their annual Labor Day party many, many years ago…possibly 1969. Lonelyville would always prepare some kind of song and presentation …they would arrive en masse at about 11:30pm. — at Bay Walk, Dunewood Fire Island.

Photographs: Ellen S. Abramowitz, Wayne R. Glaubinger & Catherine Havemeyer  – Copyright c. 2014

The Perpetual – 2014

This Perpetual trophy has been coveted by the community since its inception in 1962. It is awarded each year to the student in racing class that has demonstrated masterful skill, devotion, and attitude.

Congratulations to Sam Bither the 52nd Perpetual Trophy Winner!

Maddy Fritz the 2013 Perpetual winner and DYC instructor handing Sam Bither the Perpetual Trophies


Sam in flight….

Happiness and some big smiles form the Bither family!

Photographs: Ellen S. Abramowitz – Copyright c. 2014