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Townsend MA
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Conservation Commission
Contact TypeContact Information
Conservation Administrative Assistant
Conservation Agent
Land Use Office, 2nd Floor
272 Main Street
Townsend, MA 01469
978-597-1700 ext. 1739
1st and 3rd Wed 7:30 pm Selectmen's Chambers. Hearings on the agenda are by appointment only
Tue-Thr 9:00AM - 2:00PM
Hours vary with site visits and inspections
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Additional Links:
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Useful Conservation Links
GIS MAPS - See My Property
Members (7 Members, three year terms each, staggered so that the terms of as nearly an equal number of members shall expire each year) Appointed By: Board of Selectmen.
Term Expiration
James Deroian
Michael Turgeon
John Hussey
Karen Hill
James Le Cuyre
Christine Vitale
Description of Services
The Conservation Commission is responsible for enforcement of the Mass. Wetlands Protection Act, the Townsend General Wetlands Bylaws, and the Squannacook & Nissitissit Act of 1975. Other services include review of lands coming out of Chapter 61, management of Old Meetinghouse Park and other conservation land, and general promotion of conservation activities within the town.

Townsend is home to the Squannassit Area of Critical Environmental Concern, and has significant conservation land that provides for excellent wildlife habitat and many recreational activities, such as hunting, fishing, canoeing, and hiking.

Contact: Nik Gualco, Townsend Conservation Agent, or 978-597-1700 x1739
Date of Release: July 3, 2017
Volunteers Needed:
Squannacook River Clean Up
Upcoming Presentation and Workdays
The Town of Townsend is fortunate to be the headwater for the Squannacook River. The river is one of the first cold water fisheries encountered as one heads west from the Boston area. It is also habitat for many species of wildlife, and a lovely place to paddle. Unfortunately, recreation on the river is currently impaired by the presence of an excess of snags and woody debris, much the result of storms over the past several years. The Townsend Conservation Commission currently has a permit for the removal of snags and debris on approximately 1,250 linear feet of the Squannacook River and is organizing clean-up days. The river is impassable by canoe in approximately 30 locations within the scope of the permit.
On Thursday, July 13, 2017, at 7:00 p.m., Martha Morgan, Water Programs Director at the Nashua River Watershed Association will give a presentation on the Squannacook River; a short film titled “Trees, Paddlers and Wildlife – Safeguarding Ecological and Recreational Values on the River” will be shown. The Townsend Conservation Commission will cover the locations of the snags and log jams, reasons for leaving some of the debris for wildlife habitat. A discussion will follow. This presentation sponsored by the Townsend Conservation Commission is free to the public and recommended for those who wish to volunteer to help with the clean-up. The presentation will be held at DJ Hussey Farm, 37 Burgess Road (the barn at the end of the road) in Townsend, MA. It will be recorded for those who cannot attend that evening. To sign-up to attend this presentation, visit
Squannacook River Clean-up Workdays have been scheduled on the following Saturdays:
July 29, August 5, 12, 19, and 26th. We’ll work from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Volunteers will be hand cutting/pruning the fallen debris and will be instructed on how to lash it to the bank and or float it down stream. This will provide food and habitat for turtles, fish and other wildlife. You will also be provided with an overview of the benefits of the work and the positive effects that it will have on the river and its inhabitants. Plus, you will get to enjoy a day on the river!! Volunteers are expected to sign up for one eight hour shift, with the option for multiple days. The day will start with an overview/discussion. We will stop for a lunch break. Food will be provided.
Volunteers should be over the age of 18. Expect to get wet! Be prepared to work hard, wear appropriate clothing and shoes/boots for the water. Please bring a refillable water bottle. Tools (saws, rope, etc.) will be provided. A canoe/ kayak would be helpful, however, not necessary. Please let us know if you intend to bring one by emailing Nik at The group will meet at Townsend Memorial Hall and proceed to the river from there.
Advanced sign-up for the clean-up days is requested for planning purposes. Sign-up online at For questions, please contact Nik Gualco, Townsend Conservation Agent, at, or 978-597-1700 x1739.


The Townsend Conservation Commission will be updating the Townsend Wetland Bylaw.  Discussion will be conducted at the Con Com meetings.  The public is encouraged to attend and offer any input.  We will be working on TWB 150-2 K.   

K.~The following information is to be shown on plans unless deemed unnecessary or waived by the Townsend Conservation Commission:
(1)~Two-foot-interval contours based on mean sea level (NGVD).
(2)~One-hundred-year flood elevations.
(3)~Work limits.
(4)~High water mark for all water bodies from best available data or observation with source noted.
(5)~All aboveground structures, roadways, accessways and other visible physical alterations proposed.
(6)~All below-ground alterations and structures, including utility lines, drainage structures, on-site septic systems, wells and storage tanks.
(7)~Vegetated buffer of naturally occurring plant material: minimum 35 feet wide along all wetlands and water bodies.
(8)~Location of temporary and permanent erosion control.
(9)~For any project other than alterations to, or associated with, those for a single residential lot, the drainage basin in which the site is located shall be delineated on the locus plan, as well as any municipal water supply within that drainage basin.
(10)~All wetlands, water bodies, ditches capable of carrying water and water supply within that drainage basin.
(11)~Calculations shall be supplied for ten- and one-hundred-year interval storms. Methodology and information sources shall be supplied. Calculations should show predevelopment conditions and post-development conditions for comparative purposes.

Town of Townsend, 272 Main Street, Townsend, MA 01469 (978) 597-1700
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