The National Estuarine Research Reserves System is a network of 28 areas representing different biogeographic regions of the United States that are protected for long-term research, water-quality monitoring, education and coastal stewardship. Established by the Coastal Zone Management Act of 1972, as amended, the reserve system is a partnership program between the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the coastal states. NOAA provides funding, national guidance and technical assistance. Each reserve is managed on daily basis by a lead state agency or university, with input from local partners.
The Weeks Bay Reserve encompasses over 6,000 acres of land and water in and around Weeks Bay and along Mobile Bay. The Reserve has a free educational interpretive center and two boardwalks. One boardwalk is behind the Reserve Interpretive Center and leads to Weeks Bay; the pitcher plant bog boardwalk connects to Fish River. The Reserve is open 6 days a week Monday-Satruday from 9:00-5:00. Closed on Sunday. The Reserve is closed for state holidays but the boardwalks remain open. For more information contact the Weeks Bay Reserve at (251) 928-9792.