Located approximately 12 miles offshore on picturesque Block Island, this small refuge provides important habitat for wildlife and a place for people to appreciate the natural environment of the island. The refuge was established in 1973 with the transfer of 28 acres from the U.S. Coast Guard and has grown to its current size of 127 acres today.

Refuge lands on Block Island are most notable for the large concentration (more than 70 species) of migratory songbirds which visit the area each fall. Located in the Atlantic flyway, many young, inexperienced songbirds "overfly" the mainland and stopover on Block Island before continuing their migration. The result is a cornucopia of young migratory songbirds from a variety of different species. Block Island is internationally recognized as one of the most important migratory bird habitats on the East Coast, attracting hundreds of "birders" to the island each fall.

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Review of Block Island National Wildlife Refuge

Active and Adventure Review of Block Island National Wildlife Refuge

Away Travel Editor: Alistair Wearmouth
Editor Rating 4.0 out of 5 Recommended for:
Day Hiking
Editor Tips & Helpful Hints
  • Visit the refuge in late September and early October to witness the impressive and vast sweep of songbirds and monarch butterflies on their annual migration to warmer wintering grounds in the south.
  • Although no developed trail system exists here, the site is accessible by foot over sandy terrain. Excellent viewing opportunities exist because of the island's open habitat and low-growing vegetation.

New Shoreham
Block Island, Rhode Island

Visitor Information

Telephone Number: 401-364-9124
The details, dates, and prices mentioned here were accurate at the time of publication.

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