Published on January 20, 2020

New & Improved Goose Pond Bridge Coming Soon

Goose Pond bridge under construction at Wellfleet Bay

One of Wellfleet Bay's most popular destinations for visitors and wildlife is now a busy construction site.

Anchor Marine of Chatham is working to replace Goose Pond's aging bulkhead with a new mechanism that will allow the control of the pond's water levels—a change that will greatly improve the habitat for birds and fish.

Another part of the project will see the construction of a new bridge and platform to improve function and safety.

Restoring a Migration Station

Until about five years ago, Goose Pond's water level could be lowered during the summer months to expose more mud. 

Close-up of Belted Kingfisher © Karl Schanz
Belted Kingfisher © Karl Schanz

This important seasonal change provided foraging habitat for shorebirds making marathon migrations between their Arctic breeding grounds and their overwintering sites in South America. 

That capability will be restored once the new structure is in place. Not only that, the improved mechanism will enable staff to retain the pond's water level along with its resident fish and invertebrate populations—a move that will be appreciated by wading birds like herons and egrets.

"Goose Pond offers an amazing birding experience, especially in late summer and fall with all the arriving herons and shorebirds," notes Sanctuary Director Melissa Lowe. 

"It's also important to restore a refueling spot that is valued by these species, especially those that migrate thousands of miles."

Supporting People and Nature

The new bridge and platform will be constructed by the sanctuary's property staff with the goal of continuing to provide a space for bird watching or just sitting and enjoying the view of the salt marsh opposite the pond.

The improvements will also enhance the existing Robert R. Read All Person's Trail, which comprises most of the first section of the Goose Pond Trail. This pathway provides easy access to all visitors, thereby ensuring that Goose Pond and its bustling bird life will be available to as many people as possible.

According to Lowe, the Goose Pond project will benefit just about every program the sanctuary offers. "Whether it's day camp, school field trips, public programs, or Field Schools—Goose Pond and its birds and fish is almost always part of the experience," she says. "This important project will reward people and wildlife."

How You Can Help

With your support for this project, Goose Pond Trail will not only become accessible to more people, it will also improve the surrounding habitat for wildlife.

To make a donation, or for more information, please email Sheila Hoogeboom or call 508-349-2615 x6108.