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Grand Bay NERR to Offer Free Holiday Hayride Event

BILOXI, Miss. – Grand Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve (NERR) will host a free holiday hayride event Saturday, December 10, with hayrides leaving at 9 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. from the Grand Bay NERR Coastal Resources Center. Participants will learn how to identify native plants used in holiday decorations and how to collect them safely.

Participants will ride to the birding trail and then leisurely explore the maritime forest by foot. Hot chocolate, peppermints and cookies will be served after each hayride. Each trip can carry approximately 20 people; all children must be accompanied by a responsible adult.

Pre-registration is not required, but is recommended. To pre-register, please email your contact information including your name, email address and phone numbers to Jennifer Buchanan at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call the Reserve at 228-475-7047. Participants must sign in at the Grand Bay Coastal Resources Center located at 6005 Bayou Heron Road in Moss Point, MS at 8:30 AM prior to boarding the hayride.

The Grand Bay NERR is located in southeast Jackson County and includes wetlands and waterways from Bang's Lake to the Alabama state line. A major goal of the Reserve is to provide for research coordination and dissemination of scientific data to the community and local decision-makers to provide sound information on which to base management decisions.

The 18,000-acre reserve is home to several rare or endangered plant and animal species and serves as an essential nursery habitat for numerous important commercial and recreational fish species. The Reserve is managed through state-federal partnership between the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources and its local partners—Mississippi Secretary of State’s Office, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Mississippi State University and the Nature Conservancy—and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

The Mississippi Department of Marine Resources is dedicated to enhancing, protecting and conserving marine interests of the state by managing all marine life, public trust wetlands, adjacent uplands and waterfront areas to provide for the optimal commercial, recreational, educational and economic uses of these resources consistent with environmental concerns and social changes. Visit the DMR online at

PHOTO CREDIT: Photo Courtesy of Mississippi Department of Marine Resources

Photo caption: Yaupon Holly—a common native plant used for holiday decorations.

Contact: Jennifer Goldman Leirer
Phone: (228) 523-4101

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