John H. Chafee National Wildlife Refuge at Pettaquamscutt Cove
Northeast Region

Welcome to John H. Chafee National Wildlife Refuge at Pettaquamscutt Cove!

Here's the Latest News and Happenings From Our Refuge Complex:

Rhode Island Refuges Accomplishments, Reports and Information:

John H. Chafee National Wildlife Refuge at Pettaquamscutt Cove can be elusive to many human visitors. However, it is well-known to the migratory waterfowl that rely on it, including the largest population of black ducks in Rhode Island. In fact, the 554-acre refuge was established specifically to protect the population of black ducks that winter there. The refuge’s tidal salt marshes and forests attract many types of birds, including great egrets, herons, and several species of plovers and other shorebirds. It is also one of the few places in Rhode Island that is home to the salt marsh sharp-tailed sparrow.

Many visitors are able to view the periphery of the refuge as they canoe or kayak the Narrow River. Although there is no refuge trail system, visitors can gain a vantage point of the refuge from the Middle Bridge pull-out and Sprague Bridge on Route 1A. Designated fishing access points also provide visitors an opportunity for shoreline fishing. Visitors can find parking across the street on town property.

Kettle Pond Visitor Center and headquarters located in Charlestown, RI, celebrates John H. Chafee National Wildlife Refuge at Pettaquamscutt Cove and all of the other refuges in Rhode Island (Ninigret, Trustom Pond, Block Island and Sachuest Point) This facility contains enticing interactive exhibits, a gift shop, classrooms for special events, and knowledgeable people where visitors can come and explore the refuges and learn about the wildlife and coastal environments of each refuge. See what Kettle Pond Visitor Center has to offer by visiting our headquarters site here:

Looking for more pictures of our refuges? We have created sets of U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service photos at Flickr for your enjoyment. Please visit the following link to the Kettle Pond Visitor Center photos:

Additional photos from our refuges can be found at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service National Digital Library,

Aerial view of Pettaquamscutt Cove looking north.  Shows a portion of forested upland and salt marsh habitats.

Last updated: March 12, 2014