Natural Resources Division
Our mission is to preserve, manage and operate natural resource areas to provide compatible outdoor recreation and educational opportunities for the public.
Battle Creek Cypress Swamp - Trails are open during regular park hours. The Nature Center is closed until further notice due to fire damage.
Due to damage from the fire phones are not working. If you need to reach the center please call Flag Ponds Nature Park at 410-586-1477 and leave a message. A staff member will return your call as soon as possible.
Lower Marlboro Freedom Day, Saturday October 7, 2023. As the War of 1812 raged into the summer of 1814, British troops sailed up the Patuxent River in a bid to take Washington, D.C. They stopped to commandeer supplies at the port of Lower Marlboro in what is now Owings and offered freedom to local slaves in exchange for their service in the British war effort. Fourteen men and women won their freedom on an occasion that is now commemorated as Lower Marlboro Freedom Day. This year’s celebration will behave walking tours, speakers, entertainment, food and exhibits at the historic Lower Marlboro United Methodist Church and Lower Marlboro Hall in Owings and All Saints Episcopal Church in Sunderland. Maryland Department of Natural Resources will host a free fishing at the pier; under 16 years old do not require a fishing license; those older than 16 should apply for their license before the event: https://dnr.maryland.gov/Pages/service_fishing_license.aspx
The Natural Resources Division is accepting applications for Naturalists, Park Rangers and Technicians and Grounds Maintenance Workers. Apply through the Human Resources Department’s Career Pages
Volunteer with the Calvert Stewards
The Calvert Stewards volunteer program provides an opportunity for public service in education, research, and stewardship which support the overall missions of the Calvert County Division of Natural Resources and the Calvert Nature Society. This benefits the participants, the parks and the community as Calvert Stewards use and develop their skills to form an environmentally aware community and become the environmental stewards of Calvert County. We also encourage youth and families to volunteer for projects to create a pipeline of engaged citizens that will continue their involvement in the parks into adulthood.
Visit the Calvert Stewards web site to learn more
Calvert County Nature Parks are peerless examples of the ecological diversity found in Southern Maryland Region. Each offers significant opportunities for outdoor learning and compatible recreation.
- Battle Creek Cypress Swamp Sanctuary 100 acres of one of the northernmost stands of bald cypress trees in the United States.
- Biscoe Gray Heritage Farm 196-acre site rich in natural and cultural resources and is a living laboratory to explore, understand and experience Calvert County’s agricultural heritage throughout its history.
- Flag Ponds Nature Park 500 acres of natural area on the Chesapeake Bay from beach to upland.
- Kings Landing Park over 265 acres of natural area on the Patuxent River including a pier for fishing and launching kayaks, and 50 acres of marshland.
- Water Access including boating and fishing opportunities.
- Gatewood Preserve provides additional public access to open space for appropriate outdoor recreation such as water access, hiking, fishing and nature study and increases the protection of Battle Creek and the Patuxent Watershed. Parking is at the gate at Grays Road. Do not drive past gates.
Education and Recreation
- Trails for Hiking and Horse Riding
- Calendar of Events Sign up for one of our Nature Discovery Programs to learn about the plants and animals of Calvert County. Education programs are sponsored by the Calvert Nature Society . (external link)
- Ward Farm Recreation & Nature Park is open to the public. Click here for Trail Map.
The Division of Natural Resources also manages areas to protect the natural and cultural resources of the county.
- Hunting (external link) Public Hunting at Biscoe Gray Heritage Farm and Flag Ponds Nature Park. Contact the State Department of Natural Resources Southern Region Public Hunting Permit and Reservation System online or by phone at the Myrtle Grove office at 301-743-5161.
- Flag Ponds Nature Park Living Shoreline Project
- Hughes Memorial Tree Farm (external link)
The Natural Resources Division is part of the Calvert County Department of Parks and Recreation
Calvert Nature Society is a 501c3 "friends" group that supports the Division. (external link)
Staff naturalists and volunteers teach the CHESPAX environmental education programs for grades K, 1, 3, & 5. (external link)
The County partners with the The Nature Conservancy in the management of Battle Creek Cypress Swamp Sanctuary (external link)
Several of our parks are in the Chesapeake Bay Gateways Network (external link)