Topsail Beach Stewardship Program


These species travel hundreds, or even thousands, of miles one way to choose our beautiful beaches as a safe place to raise their young. Disturbance from humans, pets, and vehicles can be a threat to both adult and baby birds on our beaches. Much of this disturbance is due to a lack of awareness about these incredible birds. With a little effort we can all enjoy the beach!

The goal of this program is to share the diversity, life history, and amazing stories of beach-nesting birds with the people who enjoy visiting our beaches. We also want to promote bird-friendly behaviors by beachgoers that make it possible for birds and people to share the shore.

Stewards are needed mid-April through August to help these birds successfully rear their young and prepare for their migrations to wintering grounds.

What A Steward Does:

Open a friendly dialogue with beachgoers about sharing the beach with these fascinating sea and shorebirds. Regale them with the stories of individual birds using pictures and other resources to inspire recreational users of all ages. Teach the public how to observe the birds and their behavior with binoculars and scopes for an unobtrusive peek. Continue the educational journey by introducing visitors to citizen science projects and birding apps.

Teach people how to use field guides and suggest nature journaling as a beach activity for families.

In March, help post signage to protect these nesting areas before the birds arrive. Then get a tan during the summer and feel the energy of the beach as you enjoy watching the birds nest and raise their young. If you are interested in also working with community groups and events to highlight the stewardship program’s goals, this is a great opportunity to get involved!

Training calendar:

Please note, these dates have been reserved and locations will be selected based on where people are more centrally located for convenience. I can add more dates as needed, but will not be as easy to do depending on schedules. Please keep this in mind. I will do my best to accommodate all SERIOUS stewards.

Stewards are also encouraged to attend the Shorebird ID workshop in Onslow Co. on Feb. 22 from 9 am – 2 pm. Please look at listserve or email Becky at for more details.

Stewardship Training Dates:

  • Feb.  17, 2020 - AM
  • TBD


  • Feb.  21, 2020 – AM or PM
  • TBD


  • Feb.  24, 2020 - AM
  • TBD


  • Feb. 25 @ 10 am
  • Posting of nesting site at Topsail Beach


  • Feb.  28, 2020 – AM or PM
  • TBD


  • Mar. 13, 2020 – AM or PM field training
  • Topsail Beach

How to Register:

To apply to be a volunteer, please answer these few questions:


Looking for EE certification or recertification credit?  Earn up to 20 hours under Criteria II for stewardship training and work with school, community, or host a public event on site to earn up to 18 teaching hours! There will be an in-class stewardship training as well as in the field training on Topsail Beach. Ask Becky Skiba about details on teaching opportunities through email


Guidelines for teaching hours: Lessons may be 1 – 6 hours in length, with each lesson taught no more than three times.

Contact Email:

Contact Name:

Becky Skiba