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Comment Period Has Closed for Draft Great Thicket Land Protection Plan

April 04, 2016

In response to decreasing wildlife populations, conservationists have called for more protected and managed shrublands. To address this, the Service worked with partners to propose the Great Thicket National Wildlife Refuge. A draft environmental assessment was distributed for public review and comment. The comment period has now closed.

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About the Complex

Rhode Island National Wildlife Refuge Complex

Chafee National Wildlife Refuge consists of 550 acres.

John H. Chafee is managed as part of the Rhode Island National Wildlife Refuge Complex.

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About the NWRS

National Wildlife Refuge System


The National Wildlife Refuge System, within the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, manages a national network of lands and waters set aside to conserve America’s fish, wildlife, and plants.

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Around the Refuge

  • Upcoming Events

    There are events year-round at the Rhode Island National Wildlife Refuge Complex. Check out our program calendar to find one near you!

    Program Calendar
  • Piping Plover Nesting Season 2015

    Piping Plover on Third Beach 2015 by Rey Larsen

    And the final numbers are in! For the 2015 piping plover nesting season, USFWS managed sites in Rhode Island protected a total of 74 mated pairs, which in turn fledged 94 chicks. Rhode Island has seen a significant increase in pair numbers within the last decade, and is a true testament to the effectiveness of piping plover recovery and management. A great collaborative effort helped ensure this year's success!

    Click HERE for the final numbers for the 2015 Piping Plover nesting season for USFWS managed sites in Rhode Island
  • Narrow River Estuary Resiliency Restoration Program

    Narrow River Resiliency Map

    In December 2014, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) published an Environmental Assessment (EA) for the Narrow River Estuary Resiliency Restoration Program. This EA was developed to evaluate a proposal to restore estuarine and salt marsh habitats in the Narrow River Estuary (estuary), in the towns of South Kingstown and Narragansett, Washington County, Rhode Island. Much of the project area is located within the John H. Chafee National Wildlife Refuge. The proposed restoration is needed to restore and enhance salt marsh and estuarine conditions, and to increase the ecological resiliency of the estuary in the face of sea level rise, climate change, increased coastal storms, and other natural and anthropogenic trends and impacts. This need was made apparent by the impact of Hurricane Sandy in October, 2012.

    Click Here for the full Environmental Assessment, Finding of No Significant Impact, and Appendices
  • Visitor Activities

    Fishing on the refuge - USFWS.

    There are activities year-round at John H. Chafee National Wildlife Refuge including fishing, wildlife viewing, kayaking, photography and environmental education. Check out our Visitor Activities page to learn more.

    Visitor Activities
Page Photo Credits — All photos courtesy of USFWS unless otherwise noted.
Last Updated: Jan 22, 2016
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