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CZ-Tip - Help Protect At-Risk Wildlife and Plants in Massachusetts Coastal Habitats

Find ways to get to, protect, and enjoy the coast with tips from the Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management (CZM).

The Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Program (NHESP) of the Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife lists more than 400 native species of plants and animals as at risk, or potentially becoming at risk, of extinction. This list includes nearly 200 animal species, ranging in size from the giant Blue Whale to the tiny Intricate Fairy Shrimp, and more than 250 native plant species, from the towering Yellow Oak to the diminutive Sea Pink. This CZ-Tip focuses on the unique coastal and ocean habitats of Massachusetts and some of the threatened and endangered animals and plants that depend on them. Along with information on how to protect these habitats and species, the tip highlights endangered species success stories, briefly summarizes the primary laws that protect these species, and provides additional resources.

Massachusetts Coastal and Ocean Habitats and At-Risk Species

Several coastal and ocean habitats of Massachusetts are highlighted below, along with some of the endangered and threatened species that depend on them, and tips on how to help protect and restore healthy species populations. For more detailed information about critical Massachusetts habitats, see the Division of Fisheries and Wildlife’s State Wildlife Action Plan, Chapter 4 - Habitats of Species of Greatest Conservation Need (PDF, 15.4 MB). Note: Unless otherwise specified, the links below go to NHESP documents.

Coastal Beaches, Dunes, and Islands

Beach, dune, and island habitats support a variety of rare animals and plants that are specialized for life in these environments. The beach wrack (the line of seaweed, seeds, and other material left behind by the waves) offers food and shelter for small invertebrates, which in turn provide food for fish, crabs, and nesting and migrating birds. Numerous shorebirds use barrier beaches and nearby coastal salt marshes as important stopovers on their spring and fall migrations, as well as for nesting. Plants adapted to shifting sands and low competition also help support the ecosystem. These four at-risk species rely on Massachusetts beaches, dunes, or islands for survival:

  • Piping Plover (Charadrius melodus) (PDF, 224 KB) - Massachusetts barrier beaches provide some of the most important habitat for Piping Plovers along the Atlantic coast. Starting in late March or early April, these small shorebirds return to this coastline to nest and feed (with most returning to the same nesting sites each year). Nests are typically built between the high tide line and the foot of the coastal dunes. Both the eggs and newly hatched chicks are vulnerable to predation, storm waves, and human disturbances, such as foot and vehicle traffic. Adults are also vulnerable to stresses (like dogs and fireworks) that interrupt successful breeding and rearing of the young.
  • Roseate Tern (Sterna dougallii) (PDF, 298 KB) - Roseate Terns arrive in April to nest on the barrier beaches and islands of Massachusetts (within Common Tern colonies) and leave in September for their wintering grounds on the north and east coasts of South America. Adults and recently fledged young gather in large flocks on beaches and intertidal areas as they prepare for the fall migration. Bird and Ram Islands in Buzzards Bay are two of only three major Roseate Tern nesting sites in North America.
  • Northeastern Beach Tiger Beetle (Cicindela dorsalis) (PDF, 406 KB) - This beetle was formerly found along much of the Atlantic coastline of the northeastern United States, inhabiting wide, sandy beaches. Today, only two known populations occur in Massachusetts. Adults feed on insects, amphipods, and carrion. The larvae, which live in burrows on the beach, are often destroyed by off-road vehicles, and generally excluded from beaches with heavy recreational use. Habitat may be further degraded by coastal development and shoreline stabilization structures, such as seawalls. A reintroduction effort at Monomoy National Wildlife Refuge on Cape Cod has been successful, and additional efforts are being evaluated at other vehicle-free beaches.
  • Seabeach Amaranth (Amaranthus pumilus) (PDF, 174 KB) - This small, clumping, annual plant traps sand, initiates dune formation, and creates suitable habitat for other plants, such as beach grass. Though once found growing on the beaches of Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard, the plant population has severely declined due to its sensitivity to human disturbance, such as trampling, beach grooming, and impacts from development and shoreline stabilization structures. In recent years, efforts have been underway to reintroduce the plant to Nantucket Island and Monomoy National Wildlife Refuge.
beach and dune species that are endangered or threatened

Photos and credits (clockwise): Piping Plover chicks (CZM); Northeastern Beach Tiger Beetle (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service—USFWS); Roseate Terns (CZM); Seabeach Amaranth (Kevin Holcomb, USFWS)

What You Can Do to Help

  • Respect all areas fenced or posted for protection of wildlife and don’t linger near animals or their nests. Nesting shorebirds and other animals use up valuable energy resources when agitated.
  • Stay on designated pathways and boardwalks to prevent impacts to vegetation or nesting shorebirds.
  • If dogs are permitted on beaches, keep them leashed to prevent potential destruction of ground nests and harassment of animals.
  • Pick up and take trash offsite. Garbage attracts predators—such as raccoons, skunks, crows, and gulls—that may eat vulnerable shorebirds, their chicks, or other species.
  • Where off-road driving is permitted, adhere to driving policies and guidelines to prevent damage to vegetation, shorebirds or their nests, burrowing insects, and other vulnerable species. The Cape Cod National Seashore Oversand Beach Driving page has details on off-road vehicle permitting.
  • Volunteer with a program, such as the Shorebird Ambassadors with the Cape Cod National Seashore or Mass Audubon’s Coastal Waterbird Program, to help protect nesting areas and fledgling habitat.
  • Check out CZ-Tip - Birdwatching on the Coast for more information on safeguarding endangered or threatened shorebirds.

Success Story for Roseate Terns

To restore and protect the habitat of Roseate Terns on Bird Island in Marion, the Division of Fisheries and Wildlife, CZM, and other project partners undertook a major restoration project. This effort included rebuilding a failed seawall to protect the island from erosion and adding sand and gravel to the nesting area to raise the elevation and improve nesting substrate. Native coastal perennials, such as goldenrods and beachgrass, were also planted across the island to provide cover for nests and chicks. The project has been highly successful with thousands of terns re-establishing the newly created habitat for breeding and nesting and significant increases in populations of both Roseate and Common Terns.


Sandplain Grasslands and Heathlands

The near-coast plant communities of sandplain grasslands (PDF, 217 KB) and sandplain heathlands (PDF, 218 KB) are relatively flat, open habitats dominated by grasses (grasslands) and shrubs (heathlands), interspersed with annual and perennial wildflowers. Nearly 90% of the world’s sandplain grasslands occur on Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard (and a sliver of Long Island). Both sandplain environments contain nutrient-poor, sandy and gravelly soils, yet are host to many regionally and globally rare species, including at least 19 pollinators, 20 plants, and 7 birds. These three highlighted species call these habitats home:

  • Short-eared Owl (Asio flammeus) (PDF, 282 KB) - This medium-size owl, with its distinct round face and yellow eyes surrounded by black patches, lives in open expanses of coastal sandplain grassland and heathland habitats. Nests are scraped into the ground amid the low plants and lined with grasses and downy feathers (and often built atop the previous year’s nest). The Short-eared Owl, with its breeding and nesting requirements, is particularly sensitive to habitat loss and fragmentation from development, agriculture, livestock grazing, and recreation. Very few of these birds (if any) currently breed in state (though some still come to overwinter). Habitat restoration programs have shown some success in restoring suitable habitat on private land.
  • Pink-streak (Dargida rubripennis) (PDF, 549 KB) - Named for the pink streak on its forewing, this attractive nocturnal moth inhabits sandplain grasslands and dunes, and occasionally the grasslands or sandy soils of more developed areas. In Massachusetts, this species is known to occur only in the southeastern part of the state, particularly on Cape Cod and Martha’s Vineyard. Larvae feed on the developing seeds of Switchgrass (Panicum virgatum), become fully grown by late summer/early fall, and overwinter beneath the surface of the soil as pupae. The Pink-streak is threatened by habitat loss and fire suppression—fire is needed to maintain the open habitat and growth of grasses that serve as host plants. Invasive non-native plants, non-target pesticides and herbicides, off-road vehicles, and light pollution are other potential threats.
  • Sandplain Gerardia (Agalinis acuta) (PDF, 238 KB) - This annual plant, also known as Sandplain False Foxglove, is in danger of extinction throughout its range—having fewer than 23 populations worldwide, including seven in Massachusetts that are primarily on Cape Cod and the Islands. Sandplain Gerardia grows approximately 4-15 inches tall and produces short-lived, pink-purple, bell-shaped flowers in late summer and early fall. The plant is threatened by the loss of its sandy coastal plain habitat to development and encroachment by forest/shrub regrowth and non-native plant species.
sandplain grassland and heathland species that are endangered or threatened

Photos and credits (left to right): Short-eared Owl (Tom Koerner, USFWS); Pink-Streak (Samuel Perfect, iNaturalist—CC BY-NC); Sandplain Gerardia (Azucena Ponce, USFWS)

What You Can Do to Help

  • Respect beach rules and closures that are put in place to protect rare species and their habitats.
  • Stay on trails when hiking, biking, or horseback riding through these sensitive environments to prevent trampling of vegetation and disturbance of ground nests, and also respect laws that prohibit the use of off-road vehicles.
  • If you have a coastal yard, consider mimicking nature and planting or seeding grassland or heathland plants, including: Bayberry (Morella caroliniensis), Beach Heather (Hudsonia tomentosa), Bearberry (Arctostaphylos uva-ursi), Black Huckleberry (Gaylussacia baccata), Flax-leaved Stiff Aster (Ionactis linariifolia), Goldenrods (Solidago spp.), Little Bluestem (Schizachyrium scoparium), Lowbush Blueberry (Vaccinium angustifolium), Pennsylvania Sedge (Carex pensylvanica), Wavy Hair Grass (Deschampsia flexuosa), and many more. You may need to amend the soils to create favorable conditions for plant growth—try adding sand (which increases drainage) and elemental sulfur (which lowers pH). For more tips (informed by dedicated research projects), see Sandplain Grassland Network’s Conversion to Sandplain Grassland page.
  • Volunteer at organizations that manage, maintain, and reclaim sandplain grasslands. The Linda Loring Nature Foundation offers stewardship opportunities to help protect sandplain grassland and coastal heathland habitats on Nantucket (and check out their StoryMap to learn more about an ongoing grassland restoration project). Other efforts include active management of woody shrubs and trees on the Islands—learn more at Nantucket Conservation Foundation’s It Takes a Village to Understand and Manage Our Sandplain Grasslands page and The Nature Conservancy’s Restoring Imperiled Grasslands on Martha's Vineyard page.
  • Work with your local planning boards and conservation commissions to implement native grassland restoration and conservation plans. Sites such as former sand and gravel extraction sites and landfills, are opportunities for restoration and management as sandplain grasslands, rather than the more typical turf grass.


The immense open ocean and adjoining estuaries, bays, and other marine habitats are home to many species. Though expansive, the ocean is still impacted by pollution, acidification, warming temperatures, and changing ocean currents from climate change that can harm ecosystem health and species migrations. Shipping traffic, fishing gear, noise pollution, and other human-induced impacts can also directly threaten whales and other wildlife. These two at-risk whale species and four species of sea turtles are found in Massachusetts waters:

  • North Atlantic Right Whale (Eubalaena glacialis) (PDF, 323 KB) - This critically endangered species can be found in large numbers in Cape Cod Bay and surrounding areas from February through May, feeding on dense concentrations of zooplankton. The North Atlantic Right Whale is one of the world’s most endangered large whale species, with a current population estimate of fewer than 350 individuals. Commercial whalers previously hunted this species to the brink of extinction. Now, threats include entanglement in fishing gear and vessel strikes, as well as impacts from climate change and ocean noise. For more information, see the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Fisheries North Atlantic Right Whale page.
  • Humpback Whale (Megaptera novaeangliae) (PDF, 319 KB) - The humpbacks that are seen off the Massachusetts coast from spring through fall are part of the West Indies Distinct Population Segment, with an estimated population of 11,750. These whales migrate annually between their feeding and breeding grounds—winters are spent in warmer, shallower southern waters, where they mate and give birth, while summers are spent feeding at northern grounds, such as Jeffery's Ledge, Stellwagen Bank, and the waters off the coasts of Maine, New Hampshire, Cape Ann, and Cape Cod. Humpback whales are subject to entanglement with fishing gear, pollution, and vessel strikes.
  • Sea Turtles - CZ-Tip - Sharing Coastal Waters with Sea Turtles provides information about the sea turtle species found in Massachusetts, explains the threats they face, and gives tips on how to protect them. These migratory reptiles, which have been around since the age of the dinosaurs, regularly nest on U.S. beaches and depend on coastal waters for feeding and migration. During the summer and fall, four species of sea turtles are commonly found in Massachusetts waters. See these NOAA Fisheries web pages for details on each species: Green (Chelonia mydas), Kemp's Ridley (Lepidochelys kempii), Loggerhead (Caretta caretta), and Leatherback (Dermochelys coriacea). Threats to their populations include capture in fishing gear, boat strikes, marine debris (including plastics that they ingest), other forms of pollution, habitat destruction, and climate change, which can alter their nesting environments.
ocean species that are endangered or threatened

Photos and credits (clockwise): Humpback Whale (Kate Sampson, Whale Center of New England); North Atlantic Right Whale (NOAA); Loggerhead Sea Turtle hatchlings (USFWS); Kemp’s Ridley Sea Turtle (Kate Sampson, NOAA)

What You Can Do to Help

  • If you see a Right Whale or an injured, entangled, or dead marine mammal or sea turtle, please keep a safe distance and call one of the following hot lines:
    • NOAA Fisheries Greater Atlantic Marine Mammal and Sea Turtle Reporting Hotline at 866-755-6622. (The main line will filter you down to the appropriate local contact based on your sighting of a live entangled Right Whale, free-swimming Right Whale, or injured, stranded, or entangled marine mammal or turtle.)
    • International Fund for Animal Welfare Marine Mammal Rescue and Research at 508-743-9548 (for Cape Cod).
    • Center for Coastal Studies Marine Animal Entanglement Response at 800-900-3622 (for Cape Cod).
  • Always dispose of trash properly—litter may be blown to the shore or carried by storm drains into local waterways, becoming marine debris. Help pick up trash at the shore by joining a CZM COASTSWEEP event (part of the Ocean Conservancy's International Coastal Cleanup). See CZ-Tip - Help Clean Up Massachusetts Shores at COASTSWEEP for additional information.
  • In addition to proper trash disposal, help to reduce sources of marine debris. Start by reducing your use of single-use products and try alternatives, such as cloth bags and reusable cups, straws, and containers. Plastic bags are a particular problem because sea turtles mistake them for jellyfish and can die when they ingest these items. Also, do not release helium balloons, which often end up in the ocean and pose an entanglement and ingestion risk. See NOAA’s Marine Debris Program Plastic page for details and CZ-Tip - Repurposing with a Purpose for ideas on reusing items that would otherwise be thrown away or recycled.
  • When boating, adhere to boat speed limits in whale habitats to prevent deadly collisions. See the Massachusetts Environmental Police's Massachusetts Boater Safety Handbook for information about safe and responsible boating around marine mammals. To know the whale hotspots before you head out, download the Whale Alert app on your smartphone or tablet, which uses verified sightings, acoustic detections from buoys and gliders, and aerial surveys to display whale location data on a nautical chart. Submit your own whale sightings (which will be verified by the Whale App team before being posting in near-real time) to help inform speed zones, warnings, and other measures to reduce lethal ship strikes of whales and keep mariners safe.
  • When fishing, adjust equipment to reduce the likelihood of entanglements. If gear is lost at sea, try to retrieve it. Commercial fishermen who are affected by fixed-gear time-area closures in New England have the opportunity to borrow gear from the Northeast Fisheries Science Center Gear Library to help test and provide feedback for on-demand or “ropeless” systems, which can significantly reduce entanglements of large whales.
  • Volunteer at Mass Audubon’s Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary in November and December to search bayside beaches on Cape Cod for cold-stunned sea turtles and aid in their rescue. Volunteers are needed to walk stretches of beach at high tides and drive rescued turtles to New England Aquarium in Quincy. For more information, see their Sea Turtles on Cape Cod page.

Helping to Save the Whales

Since 1997, the Atlantic Large Whale Take Reduction Team has been working to reduce the level of serious injury and mortality of important whale species from the impacts of commercial gillnet and trap/pot fisheries. With the input from fishermen, scientists, conservationists, and state and federal officials from along the Atlantic seaboard, the current plan includes requirements for use of weak links and sinking groundlines, gear markings, seasonal area closures, and a minimum number of traps per trawl—all efforts to prevent entanglements and other impacts. Fishermen, engineers, and scientists are also working together to test and innovate new fishing gear, such as gear with no buoy lines in the water column, to help save the critically endangered North Atlantic Right Whale. For more information on this effort, see Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute’s Collaborating to Save the Right Whale video.


Rivers, Streams, Ponds, Swamps, and Vernal Pools

Many wildlife species, including invertebrates, fish, amphibians, reptiles, and mammals, rely on waterbodies to complete critical stages of their life cycles. Certain plant communities have also evolved to exclusively live within the saturated soils of swamps and other wetlands. Road crossings (culverts), dams, and other infrastructure can alter the hydrology, degrade water quality, and create barriers to animal movement. Disturbances or loss of adjacent land habitats can impact nesting areas. The following four species rely on waterbodies, wetlands, or adjacent habitats in coastal areas for success:

  • Atlantic Sturgeon (Acipenser oxyrinchus) (PDF, 243 KB) - Though this anadromous fish spends part of its life in coastal waters, Atlantic Sturgeon relies on rivers to spawn—and in Massachusetts, their populations are currently confined to the fast-flowing Merrimack and Taunton Rivers. These migratory fish head upriver in May and June to spawn, where juveniles remain to feed and grow until migrating back out to sea between their second and sixth years. The late age at which these fish begin to spawn (females wait until at least the tenth year when they reach 150 pounds) and long intervals between spawning make this species vulnerable to outside threats, such as dams, water pollution, entanglements in fishing gear, and vessel strikes (see the NOAA Fisheries Atlantic Sturgeon page for details).
  • Eastern Spadefoot Toad (Scaphiopus holbrookii) (PDF, 319 KB) - This unique native species is part of a primitive family of amphibians that is neither true toad nor true frog. Known for its spade-shaped hind feet used for digging, Eastern Spadefoot Toads can be found in sandy habitats such as pine barrens and sand plains next to vernal pools, ephemeral ponds, flooded fields, and roadside ditches. Their numbers have significantly declined in Massachusetts, with only 32 known populations remaining due to destruction of suitable habitat, vulnerability to pesticides, and road-crossing deaths (particularly during the breeding season).
  • Northern Red-bellied Cooter (Pseudemys rubriventris) (PDF, 777 KB) - Formerly known as the Plymouth Redbelly Turtle, this reptile’s range in Massachusetts is now confined to only Plymouth County and eastern Bristol County. These turtles inhabit small ponds, rivers, and streams, where they feed on aquatic plants or insects, bask on logs and rocks, and overwinter in the soft, muddy substrate. They nest in exposed sand and gravel, grassy areas, and roadsides near ponds and rivers from late May to early July. Their populations have declined from the loss of habitat (including nesting areas that are sandy and unshaded, which allows the sun to warm the eggs), road mortality, hatchling mortality due to increased predation, and factors that make the population vulnerable, such as a late maturation age and low rate of reproduction.
  • Sweet Bay (Magnolia virginiana) (PDF, 404 KB) - Sweet Bay is a deciduous, multi-trunked shrub or small tree with leathery leaves and creamy white fragrant flowers that bloom throughout the month of June. In Massachusetts, this magnolia is found in Red Maple swamps in Essex and Norfolk Counties. Populations have declined due to activities that alter the natural hydrology or water quality of its habitat, increased browsing by white-tailed deer, and competition from invasive plants, including Japanese Barberry (Berberis thunbergii), Glossy Buckthorn (Frangula alnus), and Purple Loosestrife (Lythrum salicaria).
waterbody species that are endangered or threatened

Photos and credits (clockwise): Atlantic Sturgeon (NOAA); Northern Red-bellied Cooter (National Marine Life Center); Sweet Bay Magnolia (Alexey Zinovjev and Irina Kadis, Salicicola.com—CC BY-NC-ND 3.0); Eastern Spadefoot Toad (Laurel Wilkerson, USFWS)

What You Can Do to Help

  • Reduce water use in your home and garden to help maintain water levels in rivers and streams to protect these habitats. See CZ-Tip - Save Water for ideas.
  • Avoid attracting predators, such as racoons and skunks, that prey on newly hatched turtles and other small animals. Secure garbage in shelters or cans with locking lids, feed pets indoors, and avoid feeding wildlife.
  • Be careful to avoid harassing animals—even indirect actions, such as walking too close to nesting areas, can stress adult species and cause abandonment of the nest.
  • Never collect animals or plants from the wild. Also, never release fish or other pets to the wild, since most of these animals are not native species and can negatively impact local ecosystems. Similarly, do not plant invasive species in your yard. For more on invasive species and how to prevent their spread, see CZ-Tip - Learn to Spot, and Deal with, the Aliens in Our Midst and the Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) Guide to Selected Invasive Non-native Aquatic Species in Massachusetts (PDF, 1.1KB). Finally, never purchase products, such as tortoise-shell, ivory, and coral, made from threatened or endangered species.
  • To help NHESP keep its database current, submit any observations of rare species to the Heritage Hub (see details in Additional Resources).
  • Volunteer with organizations that are involved in improving habitat at lakes and ponds, such as the DCR Lakes and Ponds Weed Watcher Program or Boat Ramp Monitor Program.
  • Help collect data and monitor vernal pools at Mass Audubon’s Long Pasture Wildlife Sanctuary in Barnstable. Join this ongoing community science study to track salamanders and toads and inspect and monitor restored or newly created vernal pools.

Success Story for the Red-bellied Cooter

Each year, the Division of Fisheries and Wildlife, in cooperation with numerous partners, collect and raise approximately 100-150 Red-bellied Cooter hatchlings, as part of a headstart program for species recovery. These turtles stay in captivity for approximately 8-9 months to produce larger yearlings that are significantly less vulnerable to predation, leading to a greater chance of reaching adulthood. Since the program began, more than 4,800 headstarted turtles have been released at 35 sites in southeastern Massachusetts, and annual survivorship rates appear to exceed 95% in many ponds. With the help of the headstart program, the population is estimated to have increased to 400-600 individuals of breeding age distributed among more than 20 known ponds. Similar projects are now underway for the Eastern Spadefoot Toad.


Summary of Endangered Species Laws

The U.S. Endangered Species Act and the Massachusetts Endangered Species Act (MESA) conserve and protect rare and vulnerable plants and animals (listed as either Endangered, Threatened, or Species of Special Concern) and their habitats to prevent extinction. These laws prohibit any action that may cause a "take" of a listed species (see below for an explanation of take). The federal law is implemented through the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (for projects impacting terrestrial and freshwater species) and the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) (for projects impacting marine and anadromous species). The state law is administered by NHESP. In Massachusetts, activities are subject to regulatory review if they alter the environment of rare species within Mapped Priority Habitats (and a subset, Estimated Habitats, which are areas of state-listed rare “wetlands” wildlife, protected under both MESA and the state Wetlands Protection Act). The habitats of rare species may also be protected under existing municipal wetlands protection by-laws and ordinances. These federal, state, and local efforts to protect both the species and their habitats help set rare animals and plants on a path to recovery.

Though hundreds of species have benefited from the protection afforded by these laws, many plants and animals are still at risk from factors such as air and water pollution, invasive non-native species, vessel and vehicle strikes, illegal wildlife and plant trades, and most importantly—habitat loss and degradation, and increasing threats from climate change.

What Is a “Take”?

The federal and state endangered species acts protect listed species of plants and wildlife by prohibiting their “take.” Take is broadly defined to include both direct and indirect activities—and includes any actions that would capture, harm, or kill the listed species or destroy their natural habitats. See the complete definitions of take within 16 U.S.C. § 1531.et seq.: Endangered Species Act of 1973 and 321 CMR 10.00: Massachusetts Endangered Species Act.


Additional Resources

  • Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife’s NHESP website provides detailed information on all state-listed threatened and endangered species, their supporting natural communities, the regulatory review process, conservation and land protection efforts, how to report observations, recent news and announcements, and more.
  • NHESP’s Heritage Hub offers an online reporting and filing system for rare plants and wildlife. Contributions of state-listed species observations, other species of conservation concern, and natural communities help support the most up-to-date inventory and high quality data, enhancing the success of conservation efforts.
  • NHESP also provides a Rare Species Viewer, which highlights documented observations of state-listed plant and animal species on a map, and can be searched by town or species.
  • CZM’s Coastal Habitat Publications page has links to resources on eelgrass, salt marsh, beaches and dunes, ocean, seafloor, other marine habitats, and more. The list includes published materials, ranging from resource inventories to management recommendations, on topics related to coastal plants, wildlife, and their habitats.
  • CZ-Tip - Sign Up for Coastal Citizen Science provides additional opportunities for monitoring water quality, counting birds, sighting sea animals, contributing photographs, recording trash on the beach, and many more data collection efforts that enhance conservation and protection of plants and wildlife.
  • CZM’s Stormwater Solutions for Homeowners Fact Sheet: “Green” Lawn and Garden Practices offers tips for creating healthy habitats where wildlife can find food, shelter, and raise their young and where pollinators, such as bees and butterflies, can thrive.

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