Woman holding binoculars Join today and get outside at one of our 60+ wildlife sanctuaries.
Woman holding binoculars Join today and get outside at one of our 60+ wildlife sanctuaries.
person walking on a trail through a forest
Rutland Brook Wildlife Sanctuary, Petersham

Conserving & Protecting Land

Mass Audubon actively protects over 41,000 acres in Massachusetts.

Land conservation is critical to the survival of native wildlife and plants and for the health and well-being of those who live, work, and play in Massachusetts. It's also one of the most effective, proven strategies when it comes to mitigating the increasing impacts of climate change. 

We've been protecting wild places across the state for more than a century using our science-based land conservation strategy.

Mass Audubon’s Land Conservation Strategy  

For decades, we have considered many factors when it comes to protecting land. These can include adjacency to a wildlife sanctuary, the presence of rare and endangered species, proximity to existing protected land, and number of acres.  

More recently, to align with the state’s goal of protecting 30 percent of land by 2030 (30x30), we are additionally prioritizing biodiverse and carbon-rich parcels as well as those in urban areas. 

Ways of Protecting Land  

We protect land by working with land trusts, municipalities, government agency partners, and private landowners. 

For Private Landowners 

There are many ways to permanently protect your land, including a donation or sale of the ownership of the land, or of a perpetual conservation restriction (easement). Learn more about conserving your land

View from Hawes Hill overlooking forest and cloudy skies

Urgent Land Project: Hawes Hill Corridor, Barre

An extraordinary large-scale land protection project is underway in Barre, MA—Mass Audubon is collaborating with several partners and landowners to permanently protect 973 acres of land.

Learn More

Recent Success Stories

  • Skunk cabbage at the edge of a pond

    Protecting 64 Ecologically Important Acres in Hampden

    This project area is a portion of a large, relatively intact forest block, which supports populations of wide-ranging species including bobcat, coyote, and white-tailed deer, as well as the Eastern box turtle, a species of special concern in Massachusetts.

  • Porcupine in a grassy field

    Protecting "Porcupine Woods" near Mount Wachusett

    Thanks to an amazing public-private partnership, 69 acres of prime wildlife habitat adjacent to Wachusett Mountain State Reservation and Mass Audubon’s Wachusett Meadow Wildlife Sanctuary are now permanently protected.

  • wooded path through forest

    Bedrock Ledge in Becket, MA

    Mass Audubon Helps Protect Almost 300 Acres in Becket

    The recent protection of Bedrock Ledge, almost 300 acres in Becket, MA, brings us closer to achieving our goal of Protecting and Stewarding Resilient Landscapes as set out in our Action Agenda. It is a prime example of working with partners to protect the Commonwealth's most climate resilient and diverse habitats.

  • looking up at the tree canopy

    The Road to 40,000 Acres. . .and Beyond

    Mass Audubon now protects more than 40,000 acres from the eastern shore of Nantucket to Yokun Seat in the Berkshires, and over 200 places in between. 

  • View of Greater Gales Brook landscape from Littlewood in Western Mass

    How a Community Came Together to Protect 700 Acres

    Mass Audubon recently partnered with Mount Grace Land Conservation Trust and 12 landowners to protect over 700 acres in the Greater Gales Brook Conservation Project.

  • Stone wall separating Holder property (left) from Wachusett Meadow Wildlife Sanctuary (right)

    Mass Audubon Protects 16 Acres of Undeveloped Forest in Princeton, MA

    Mass Audubon recently protected an important 16-acre parcel that sits at the entrance to Wachusett Meadow Wildlife Sanctuary and runs alongside one of the sanctuary's trails.

  • Beaver pond on the newly protected land near Whetstone Wood Wildlife Sanctuary

    Key Wildlife Corridor and 110 Acres Protected

    On June 15, 2022, Mass Audubon completed the protection of roughly 110 acres of land and a critically important connection between our Whetstone Wood Wildlife Sanctuary (a large sanctuary protected for wildlife with little impact from people) and Wendell State Forest. 

Latest News

See more
View through the trees toward the water at the site of the former Cape Cod Sea Camps
Press Release February 06, 2024

Mass Audubon and Brewster Conservation Trust Partner with Town of Brewster to Conserve and Activate Former Cape Cod Sea Camps Properties

Learn More
Trees in a field at Pawtucket Farm
News January 11, 2024

Protecting Pawtucket Farm in Lowell

Keep Reading
View from Hawes Hill overlooking forest and cloudy skies
News December 15, 2023

Urgent Land Project: Hawes Hill Conservation Corridor, Barre

Keep Reading
marsh at Allens Pond with white bird in distance

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Make a lasting impact for people and wildlife.

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