Description - Nantucket National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) was established in 1975 for its "particular value in carrying out the national migratory bird management program." The refuge, which is cooperatively managed with The Trustees of Reservations, encompasses 24 acres at Great Point. Nantucket NWR is an un-staffed unit of the Eastern Massachusetts NWR Complex.
- Located on the tip of Great Point on Nantucket Island, this 40 acre refuge is barrier beach island habitat. Access is by foot, oversand vehicle or boat. The Refuge is a favorite destination of surf fishermen.
Recreation - The refuge is open to surf-fishing year round, daily, 24 hours. Anglers may be restricted from certain areas within the refuge due to the presence of protected migratory birds.
Nantucket NWR is a popular destination for birders and others who enjoy observing and photographing wildlife. Gray and harbor seals often haul-out along the beaches at Great Point. Great Point lighthouse adds an interesting element for the photography enthusiast.
Climate - Massachusetts experiences four distinct seasons with slightly varying temperatures in the inland and coastal regions. Along the coast the water is a moderating factor that often prevents large amounts of snowfall from accumulating through the winter. Summer temperatures are usually cooler than low lying inland areas, due to ocean breezes. This region of the country experiences high humidity in the summer season and temperatures that average close to 80 degrees F. Fall and Spring are pleasant times to visit the region with crisp air and low humidity. Brilliant foliage colors can be found in the central and western regions of the state in late September and October. Winter temperatures can be brutally cold on occasion with a humidity-filled wind, but on average winter daytime temperatures reach 35 degrees F and lows reach into the teens. Spring is usually the wettest time of year, but trees, bushes and flowers are blooming by early May.
Access to the refuge is via over-sand vehicle (permit required), bicycle, foot, or boat.
A ferry is also avaliable from Hyannis to Nantucket.