Educational Opportunities

Consistent with its mission to provide environmental education and research opportunities, Hoffler Creek Wildlife Foundation (HCWF) partners with local schools, community groups, and universities to encourage good stewardship of the land through knowledge of, connection to, and understanding of these critical natural areas.

What can my class learn about at Hoffler Creek Wildlife Preserve?

  • plants
  • animals
  • lakes
  • forests
  • salt marshes and wetlands
  • water quality
  • watersheds
  • ecology
  • biology
  • chemistry
  • War of 1812
  • invasive species
  • oysters
  • Chesapeake Bay

To schedule a visit to Hoffler Creek Wildlife Preserve, please email us or 757-686-8684. We will be happy to schedule your visit and provide you with a copy of the Group Rules and Guidelines which must be completed and returned at least 3 days before your visit.


Ongoing Environmental Education and Research Projects

Oyster Gardening

HCWF partners with Oyster Reef Keepers of Virginia to provide local educators an opportunity to help restore oysters in the Chesapeake Bay system. Local educators keep oyster floats at the dock and bring students to measure and clean the important eastern oyster, Crassostrea virginica. In the spring, students will “plant” their oysters on a nearby oyster reef to add to the local population. Currently, students from Portsmouth, Chesapeake, and Virginia Beach are gardening oysters on Hoffler Creek.


Old Dominion University (ODU) professors and graduate students are leading a variety of studies at Hoffler Creek. Studies include work on Lake Ballard, a unique brackish lake with incredible depth variations. Bird surveys provide data about migratory movement, parasites, and the health and variation of the Hoffler Creek bird population. Virginia Military Institute (VMI) and ODU partnered to test the “tickbot,” a new method of tick control, for the first time along the trails of Hoffler Creek in the summer of 2013. Researchers are continuing trials in 2014 and have been excited by the results they are seeing.