This site includes the waters and adjoining wetlands on the
southernmost corner of Long Island Sound. The site extends from
Little Neck Bay east to Hempstead Harbor. Underwater lands are
largely under the jurisdiction of the Town of North Hempstead.

Ornithological Summary

This site is an important waterfowl wintering area. The NYSOA
winter waterfowl survey documented 11,598 waterfowl in 1999, which
was largely composed of Greater Scaup (6,183), one of the largest
concentrations in the state. The site is also an important breeding area
for Piping Plovers and Least Terns. Other at-risk species that have
been documented here include the Brant (winters), American Black
Duck (common in winter), Common Loon (winters), Pied-billed Grebe
(winters), American Bittern (rare migrant), Osprey (breeder, more
than four nests), Northern Harrier (migrant), Sharp-shinned Hawk
(migrant and winters), Northern Goshawk (rare migrant), Peregrine Falcon (migrant), American Oystercatcher (regular breeder), Common
Tern (common migrant), Black Tern (uncommon migrant), Black
Skimmer (rare migrant), Common Nighthawk (migrant), Yellowbreasted
Chat (rare migrant), Vesper Sparrow (rare migrant), Nelson?s
Sharp-tailed Sparrow (migrant), Seaside Sparrow (rare migrant),
plus other rarities. Over the past 30 years, over 250 species have been
documented at Sands Point, which comprises a variety of habitats
unique in Nassau County. The site is also an important stopover site
for shorebirds; 100-200 individuals are regularly seen at Prospect Point
alone during fall migration.
Mixed species 2,177 ind. in 2004, 6,039 in 2003,
2,687 in 2002, 3,966 in 2001,5,267 in 2000, 11,598 in 1999
Winter NYSOA winterwaterfowl counts.

Conservation Issues

This site is listed in the 2002 Open Space Conservation Plan as a
priority site under the project name Long Island Sound Coastal
Area. Water pollution from various sources, including contaminants,
oil spills, suburban runoff, excessive sedimentation, and sewage and
storm water discharges, is a major factor affecting aquatic resources
on which waterfowl and other waterbirds rely. Increased residential
and commercial development along the shorelines may cause
increased pollution and disturbance of birds. Protection of significant
sites, particularly wetlands, should continue. Smaller wetlands are
susceptible to development and need better protection. Waterfowl
numbers should be monitored regularly. Existing monitoring includes
Piping Plover and Least Tern surveys at Prospect Point, Plum Point,
and Half Moon Beach in Sands Point.

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