The Nantucket Conservation Foundation owns, protects, and stewards over 9,000 acres of land and coastal shoreline, conserves Nantucket’s rare and significant natural resources, and engages in impactful ecological research to inform resource management and further our knowledge of Nantucket’s unique ecosystems and species. We share our environmental expertise with the wider community and provide educational and recreational opportunities to encourage respectful enjoyment and appreciation of our properties.
Maintaining the natural beauty of Nantucket’s environment requires careful planning, continuing public education and vigilant ongoing action. The Foundation currently owns many important tracts of land that, had they been developed, would have significantly altered the rural character and natural beauty of the Island as we know it today. These areas are currently used and enjoyed by the public for education and passive recreation purposes.
Conservation & Stewardship
The majority of the land held by the Foundation has been generously donated by individuals, organizations, estates, bequests, and trusts. The Foundation continues to strategically seek to purchase tracts of land with conservation value that abut or are in close proximity to other conservation properties. Additionally, many species of rare plants and wildlife occur on our properties that need to be monitored and protected. Our efforts include heathland and grassland management programs, inventory and protection of endangered species, and properties management.
The tremendous influx of visitors to Nantucket during the summer and shoulder seasons requires that we be responsible stewards of our numerous holdings. The Foundation seeks to expand the user experience on its properties through management of invasive species, trail development and management, property access expansion, and implementation of a mobile application to enhance current user experiences and improve educational opportunities.
Scientific Research & Outreach
The Foundation’s Department of Science and Stewardship undertakes focused research and monitoring projects aimed at providing increased understanding of the rare resources found on our properties. This information is used to make well-informed ecologically-based management decisions and to develop detailed management plans for the Foundation’s conservation lands.
Public Service to the Community
Educating visitors about the natural and cultural history of our properties are important parts of our mission. Our Ranger Program provides visitors with personal, one-on-one contact Foundation representatives who are able to supply knowledge about the natural history of our unique properties.