The newest of the Reserve’s Special Areas, Peard Bay encompasses 107,000 acres in the northwest between Barrow and Wainwright. This area includes high densities of ice seals and polar bears, and the highest density of spectacled eider nesting areas in Alaska. The colorful males display black feathers surrounding white eye patches, resembling a pair of spectacles! Tens of thousands of shorebirds, especially red phalaropes, move through Peard Bay after breeding.
Peard Bay also provides haul out areas for ringed and bearded seals. Peard Bay is characterized by thousands of small thaw lakes, freshwater bodies formed in a depression by meltwater from thawing permafrost.