Monday, May 13, 2013
The shark appeared to be dead.
Patch reader Donna McHenry found a shark, which she said appeared to be dead, washed up on the far south west side of Sachuset Point Sunday. Several witnesses said they were told it was a basking shark, which is the second largest living fish, after the whale shark. The shark appeared to have fishing lines around his tail. Mystic Aquarium was contacted, said McHenry. If you see a standard marine mammal or sea turtle, you can call Mystic Aquarium's 24-hour at 860.572.5955 ext.107.
Sunday, March 17, 2013
The road that leads up to the Sachuest Point National Wildlife Refuge has been closed since Hurricane Sandy. Work has began to open the road.
Officials say work to open the road that leads up the Sachuest Point National Wildlife Refuge has begun. The road has been closed since concrete slabs washed up during Hurricane Sandy last October. Although officials previously announced the refuge would be open by the end of January 2013, winter weather delayed the project. There are no official estimates of when the refuge will be open, but a Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) official said the project to clear the road should take approximately a month. “We are grateful to our state and federal partners for helping us restore access to this vital natural resource that was virtually cut off after Hurricane Sandy,” Governor Lincoln D. Chafee said. “When all is said and done…
Tuesday, February 5, 2013
Bad weather has delayed the re-opening of the Sachuest Point National Wildlife Refuge
In December, officials announced they hoped to re-open Sachuest Point National Wildlife Refuge by the end of January 2013; however, recent winter storms has delayed the work. A new date has not been released. The refuge was closed due to unsafe and hazardous conditions caused by Hurricane Sandy. The high surf created unstable banks and washed up concrete slabs on Sachuest Point Road, which left it impassable. “Unfortunately, we will be unable to reopen the refuge to the public until the road is repaired because our current 4-wheel drive access roads are not adequate for emergency response if necessary,” said Sarah Lang, Volunteer Coordinator with the refuge. Lang added the contract to repair the road has been awarded by the The Rhode …
Wednesday, December 26, 2012
During a tour of the damaged area, officials announced work to open the road should begin shortly.
After Hurricane Sandy shut down Sachuest Point National Wildlife Refuge over a month ago, there appears to be a light at the end of the tunnel. During a tour of the damaged park last week, officials announced the refuge will be open to the public by the end of January. Robert Smith, Deputy Chief Engineer for the Department of Transportation said the road, which is currently impassable, will be not only cleared and repaved, but that they plan to build a “stone armor” to shield against future storms. Smith said they expect to put out a contract for the work within five days. “This isn’t a quick fix,” added the Refuge Manager Charlie Vandemoer. The concrete slabs that were washed up on Sachuest Point Road will be reused to armor the …
Wednesday, December 5, 2012
Law enforcement officials will patrol the refuge and anyone found on the refuge may be ticketed.
Federal officials are asking the public to adhere to the closure of Sachuest Point National Wildlife Refuge in Middletown. The refuge is closed due to unsafe and hazardous conditions resulting from damage caused by Hurricane Sandy. “The high surf created unstable banks, severe drop offs right next to the trail, washed out trails, and over-steepened shoreline access points”, said Refuge Manager Vandemoer. “These hazardous conditions coupled with the lack of emergency vehicle access to the refuge from the damage to Sachuest Point Road, create unsafe conditions for the public.” Law enforcement officials will patrol the refuge and anyone found on the refuge may be ticketed. Staff will continue to assess the damages, and work with federal, …
Wednesday, August 22, 2012
Sachuest Point Wildlife Visitor Center will celebrate its grand re-opening this Friday with a day of family friendly activities.
After almost seven months of construction, the Sachuest Point Wildlife Visitor Center will open its doors again this week. An afternoon of fun events and an opening ceremony will help unveil the new exhibits Friday, Aug. 24, from noon until 5 p.m. All events are free and the public is welcome. The Visitor Center is located at 769 Sachuest Point Road in Middletown, RI. "Our efforts to create and install high quality exhibits at Sachuest Point have been a long time coming, over several years actually,” said Janis Nepshinsky, Visitor Services Manager for the National Wildlife Refuges in Rhode Island. “We are excited that we are ready to open our doors and let the public enjoy the exhibits.” She …
Thursday, January 26, 2012
Our local snowy owl has been seen at Island Rocks in the Sachuest Point National Wildlife Refuge. Have you seen the owl anywhere in Portsmouth?
An article in The New York Times this week,“Bird-Watchers Revel in Unusual Spike in Snowy Owl Sightings,” describes an increase in the number of snowy owl sightings across the country. In Middletown, birders are reporting that there has been a resident snowy owl at Sachuest Point National Wildlife Refuge since late December. The snowy owl has been seen feeding on black ducks and scoters offshore at Island Rocks around dusk. Island Rocks can be seen from the Flint Point and Ocean View hiking trails, and also from the observation platforms. Have you seen any owls here in Portsmouth?
Monday, January 16, 2012
Mystic Aquarium’s Marine Mammal and Sea Turtle Stranding program will conduct a training session at Sachuest Point for local residents interested in being “First Responders."
A free training session will be held Feb. 1, from 6 to 8 p.m., at the Sachuest Point Visitor Center for volunteers who want to join the “First Responders Team” for marine mammal rescues. According to Walter “Skip” Graf, of the Marine Mammal and Sea Turtle Stranding program based at Mystic Aquarium, the class is open to anyone who is 18 years or older and “passionate about marine mammals and sea turtles.” The Feb. 1 session is the only date for the training before the busy time of year for marine mammal rescue hotline calls, which Graf says is the months of February to April. Once volunteers have completed a training session, they are added to the call list to assist in the event of a stranded seal, whale, sea turtle or other marine mammal …
Saturday, December 31, 2011
The Harlequin ducks have already arrived at Sachuest Point National Wildlife Refuge, in Middletown, where birdwatching continues all winter. Have you seen any other birds?
Birding enthusiasts know that Sachuest Point National Wildlife Refuge, in Middletown, is a great place to see some 200 bird species throughout the year. Wintertime is especially good for seeing Harlequin ducks, as the Sachuest refuge has the second largest wintering population of the ducks on the Atlantic Coast, according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), operators of the refuge. If you walk along the refuge trail’s 3-mile outer loop, you’re sure to see the ducks, as well as a number of loons, eiders, and gannets. According to Birdwatcher Bruce Larson, 30 Harlequin ducks were seen at Sachuest on Dec. 18, as well as the following birds: "Also, Neil Anthes from USFWS saw a bald eagle fly over Sachuest Point on the same day," …
Monday, November 7, 2011
Middletown police say Gary Mathias' death last Wednesday, Nov. 2, was an accident . Mathias died at Newport Hospital after at water rescue at Third Beach in Middletown.
Middletown police have closed the investigation into the death of Portsmouth fisherman Gary Mathias, ruling the cause as "accidental." "It appears accidental," said Middletown Police Lt. Robert Nutt on Monday. "The investigation has been closed." Gary Mathias, 48, of Portsmouth, died Wednesday, Nov. 2, after he was swept into the ocean by a large wave near the Sachuest Point Wildlife Refuge, Middletown police said. Mathias was fishing on the rocks with a friend and was just about to leave, when a large wave knocked him off the rocks and swept him into the water. "A big wave came in and swept him off the rocks," Nutt said. "His friend tried to grab him. He (Mathias' friend) then drove down to the Cumberland Farms down the road to use the…