Places We Protect

Otwell Woodlands

Maryland / DC

A young girl stands in front of a tall pine tree with her hand pressed against the tree's thick bark.
Otwell Woodlands Preserve Otwell Woodlands is an unusually old Eastern Shore woodland of mixed hardwoods and loblolly pines. © Ben Herndon for The Nature Conservancy

This tranquil Eastern Shore forest is full of mature hardwoods and loblolly pines.



This preserve is a unusually old Eastern Shore woodland of mixed hardwoods and loblolly pines, a seldom seen remnant of the forests that once covered much of the Delmarva Peninsula. Otwell Woodland provides a secure habitat for year-round and migrating birds.

Not timbered since 1900, the eastern half of the preserve harbors an abundance of mature loblolly pines. In the western half there is a handsome growth of large beech, various oaks, hickories, sweet gum and tulip-trees interspersed with the pines.

The shrub layer is dominated by American holly, amelanchier, flowering dogwood, sassafras, pawpaw and poison ivy. On the forest floor may-apple, spring beauties and wood sorrel bloom in the spring.

Along the shore is a small but healthy tidal marsh of cattail and cordgrass. Because of its sheltered location in the cove, the preserve provides good habitat for wintering waterfowl and other birds, such as canvasback, scaup, American widgeon, hooded pergansers, green herons, great blue herons, ospreys and kingfishers. 

94 acres have been protected at Otwell since 1979. 



This preserve is not open to the public.


Talbot County, MD

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A NOTE ON HUNTING: Several TNC nature preserves in Maryland include hunting leases for deer management. Visit the Maryland Department of Natural Resources to find information on hunting season, licenses and access to public lands. When visiting a TNC nature preserve during hunting season, please wear blaze orange and try to avoid visiting in the early morning or evening hours when hunting is most active. For additional guidelines on how you can hike safely during the hunting season, visit the American Hiking Society.

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