Watts Wildlife Sanctuary, Huntress Bridge Rd., Effingham

Watts Wildlife Sanctuary, Huntress Bridge Rd., Effingham

New Hampshire Audubon Effingham, New Hampshire 03882

Official Website
Watts Wildlife Sanctuary brochure and map

Birds of Interest

Spring, summer, and fall birding.

Along the trail at the parking area: Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, Hermit Thrush, Eastern Wood-Pewee, Belted Kingfisher, Osprey, and waterfowl.

Along Huntress Bridge Road: Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, Alder Flycatcher, White-throated and Swamp Sparrows, Yellow and Chestnut-sided Warblers, Common Yellowthroat, Northern Waterthrush, Ruffed Grouse, Purple Finch, and other passerines. Raptor flyovers are possible.

About this Location

Watts Wildlife Sanctuary is a New Hampshire Audubon Wildlife Sanctuary, named after Charles and Mabel Watts, who cared for the site for over 60 years as a wildlife sanctuary. Their son donated 250 acres to New Hampshire Audubon in 1989, and 130 additional acres east of Huntress Bridge Road were acquired in 1996. Except for the woods along the high ground along the Ossipee River, almost all of the sanctuary is a large heath shrub swamp.

From NH-16 in Center Ossipee, go east on NH-25 for about 6.25 miles, and turn right on NH-153 just before the Ossipee River bridge. Go south on NH-153 just over a mile to the parking area on the left.

To get to the Huntress Bridge Road swamp area, continue south from the parking area on NH-153 for maybe 0.75 miles to where the road makes a sharp right. Turn left onto the dirt Huntress Bridge Road, and park on the right just past the last house on the right at the beginning of the swamp.

Notable Trails

The one trail is the Yellow Trail, only 0.44 miles long, going into the woods and along the river from the parking area until it gets too swampy. Parts may be quite wet after snowmelt and significant rains.

Along Huntress Bridge Road, birding is done by walking up and down the road, which is about 0.5 miles long.


  • Restrooms on site

  • Wheelchair accessible trail

  • Entrance fee

Last updated November 15, 2023