And by not being there with either permission or permits to go off-trali, I couldn't get very close to the good birds, so what I do have are shots of birds far away and just not enough time or lens length to capture what I could see would be good shots.
That said, Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge is well worth a visit! If you are a birder, with binoculars and/or a scope, you will see quite a lot of good birds. The middle of summer is not best, but what a nice place to bird. If you are a photographer, bring a BIG lens, as there are not many trails and they don't go real close to the best spots for the birds.
So, how about an American Avocet. This bird is not just quite pretty, but has the interesting bit that its bill turns upward at the end instead of straight or downward like most birds. This is reflected in its Latin name, Recurvirostra americana (roughly translated from Latin as the "bent backwards beak").