Wait for low tide to walk along a spit to Zeke's Island, a reserve in the Cape Fear River. Drive down to the Federal Point boat ramp (beyond the Southport-Fort Fisher ferry terminal) and find the Rocks, a breakwater first erected in 1873 that extends beyond Zeke's Island. Go by boat if maneuvering the tricky rocks by foot sounds too risky. This component of the North Carolina National Estuarine Research Reserve consists of Zeke's Island, North Island, No-Name Island, and the Basin, the body of water enclosed by the breakwater. The complex totals 16 acres. The varied habitats include salt marshes, beaches, tidal flats and estuarine waters. Bottle-nosed dolphins, red-tailed hawks, osprey and colonies of fiddler crabs . The intertidal flats in the Zeke's Island vicinity are the most important shorebird habitat in southeastern North Carolina. Fishing, sunbathing and boating are the primary pursuits here. Bring what you need, pack out everything and don't forget drinking water and sunscreen.
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