Jones Island is a 24-acre coastal island located in the middle of the White Oak River about a mile from the town of Swansboro . In October 2007, the North Carolina Coastal Federation (NCCF), the N.C. Clean Water Management Trust Fund, Audubon North Carolina and the N.C. Division of Parks and Recreation entered into a partnership to purchase 17 acres of Jones Island and include it as part of Hammocks Beach State Park. The partners acquired Jones Island to reduce stormwater runoff and other negative impacts of coastal development to the river. Almost 6,000 acres of the river's waters are either permanently closed to shellfish harvesting or are subject to closure following heavy rains. More than 70% of those closed waters are in the main portion of the river around Jones Island. One of the river's major pollution sources is fecal coliform bacteria from stormwater runoff. The acquisition of Jones Island has eliminated the possibility of development on the island, which would have been an additional source of fecal contamination and may have caused an increase in the frequency of shellfish closures. The preservation also helps protect the waters downstream of the river, which are classified as Outstanding Resource Waters by the state.
Jones Island is characterized by low upland rises at the southeast and northwest ends, with marshes and small ponds along its eastern shore. Much of the island is dominated by a Coastal Fringe Evergreen Forest, which is considered to be a rare and regionally significant coastal ecosystem by the N.C. Natural Heritage Program. The forest is dominated by loblolly pine and live oak. Yaupon and wax myrtle are prominent in the dense shrub layer. Also, the Eastern Painted Bunting, a federal species of concern, uses the island as a nesting site.
9 developable acres on a private 17 acre island in Carteret County on the White Oak River. Close proximity to NC State maintained boat ramp to the east, the Intracoastal Waterway, beautiful Historic Downtown Swansboro, and HWY 24 Mainland. Potential for boat dock around the majority of the island to support houseboat community as well as condos on the 9 developable acres. Primitive Island requires infrastructure.