New England aster
Patuxent Research Refuge, the nation's only National Wildlife Refuge established to support wildlife research, was created in 1936 by President Franklin D. Roosevelt. It has grown from 2,670 acres to 12,841 acres and encompasses land surrounding the Patuxent and Little Patuxent Rivers between Washington, D.C. and Baltimore, MD. Approximately 10,000 acres are forested, contributing to one of the largest blocks of contiguous forested habitat in the mid-Atlantic. Other habitat types include fields, marshes, scrub-shrub communities, and constructed impoundments. Patuxent Research Refuge is divided into three areas: 1) Central Tract, the location of the USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center; 2) South Tract, home of the National Wildlife Visitor Center and, 3) North Tract. Both South Tract and North Tract are open to the public and offer hunting, fishing, wildlife observation, photography, trails, and interpretive programs.