Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary: Leading on Climate Change

Did you know that one of Massachusetts' leading climate change organizations is located right down the road from Endless Coast? The Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary tracks the effects of climate change. Notably, it records impacts to the wildlife and habitat of the Outer Cape.

The sanctuary fights on the front lines of the changing Cape Cod National Seashore. Therefore, it's informative displays explain both the challenges and solutions of a warming climate.  Additionally, the organization advocates for policies that actively protect the nature of our fragile backyard. 

Most importantly, the center itself contributes to the state's clean energy future. As of 2019, the sanctuary's energy now comes completely from solar energy. Panels in the roof generate renewable and sustainable electricity that light the Nature Center today, and for decades to come.

Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary Conservation Measures

  • Onsite, a trailside exhibit along Goose Pond Trail features sea level rise markers. These markers show how high water levels might rise in future decades.
  • In the field, a series of sanctuary programs protect diamondback terrapins and rescue cold-stunned sea turtles. For example, Wellfleet Bay staff and a corps of over 250 volunteers patrol the beaches of Cape Cod, on the lookout for cold-stunned turtles. Then, once found, this team transports the turtles to the New England Aquarium for evaluation and rehabilitation.
  • Additionally, programs also protect coastal waterbird habitats as these species are increasingly threatened by climate change.

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