Sampson’s Island Dredge & Dead Neck Nourishment

Cotuit Dredge Milestones:


  • September 10, 2020DEAD NECK SAMPSON’S ISLAND DREDGING & BEACH NOURISHMENT PROJECT – PHASE 3  The Town of Barnstable, working with Barnstable County Dredge, will be starting Phase 3 of the Dead Neck Sampson’s Island Dredging & Beach Nourishment project on Monday, September 14th.  The project includes dredging of approximately 40,000 cubic yards of sand on the west end of the island, which will be re-used onsite for habitat and beach nourishment.  Vessels for the transport of Barnstable County Dredge and general contractor employees will be anchored at the Cotuit Town dock for the duration of construction. Dredging operations are anticipated to begin on September 21, 2020 and anticipated to last through November 20, 2020, with beach nourishment activities anticipated to last through December 30, 2020.  Weather pending, construction/dredging will be on-going, Monday through Saturday from 7:00 AM to 5:00 PM until completion of this phase of the project. Boat operators in Cotuit Bay and the Seapuit River are encouraged to use caution when operating in this area during dredging and nourishment operations.
  • August 7, 2020  View Final Phase 3 Bid Invitation Documents and Information HERE
  • June 8, 2020    Town awarded $500,000 Grant from the 2020 Round of the Massachusetts Dredging Program from Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development for Phase 3
  • January, 2, 2020 View Process HERE
  • December 20, 2019 Phase 2 Completed ahead of schedule
  • September 26, 2019 Successful Bidder Awarded Phase 2 – Dig It Construction, $375,000
  • PHASE 2 OF DREDGING OF COTUIT BAY ENTRANCE CHANNEL AND WESTERN TIP OF SAMPSON’S ISLANDThe Department of Public Works, in collaboration with Barnstable Clean Water Coalition, Massachusetts Audubon Society, and Barnstable County, will begin operations for Phase 2 of the dredging of the Cotuit Bay Entrance Channel and the western tip of Sampson’s Island during the week of October 15, 2019.  Dredging is anticipated to commence on or about October 30th.   This work is a continuation of the work completed last year and will widen the existing channel by approximately an additional 130 feet.  The dredged material will be utilized for beach nourishment purposes on the southern side of the eastern end of the island and for a habitat enhancement area. Weather pending, dredging operations will be on-going, Monday through Saturday from 7 AM to 5 PM until completion of this phase of the project.  Dredging operations will be completed by January 14, 2020.
  • February 1, 2019: Nourishment cleanup/Demobilization complete
  • January 22, 2019: View Barnstable County Sand Drifter Dredge HERE
  • January 15, 2019: Close of Permitted Dredge Window
  • Week of November 5, 2018: Dredging Operations commence.  This phase of the project will widen the existing channel by approximately 130’ and the dredged material will be utilized for beach nourishment purposes on the southern side of the eastern end of the island (Dead Neck Beach) and for a habitat enhancement area. Weather permitting, dredging operations will be on-going, Monday – Saturday from 7 AM to 5 PM until completion of this phase of the project.  Dredging operations will be completed by January 15, 2019. 
  • November 25, 2018: View Aerial Drone footage  HERE
  • Week of October 22, 2018: Dredging operations commence
    • Anticipate ±50 working days of dredging
    • County dredge operates 6 days a week, 10 hours per day
  • October 16, 2018: Beginning of Permitted Dredge Window
  • Permit Public Comment Period 10/26-11/26/15 
  • Week of October 15, 2018:
    • County Dredge mobilization
    • Contractor mobilization
    • Contractor strips vegetation and builds dewatering pits
  • October 11, 2018: Anticipated bid close date
  • September 24, 2018: Notify Misc. Agencies of Project Start
  • September 20, 2018: Anticipated date to issue Invitation for Bid for dewatering/beach  nourishment contractor
  • Week of September 10, 2018: Natural Resources to conduct shellfish survey
  • Update: August 25, 2018: The State awarded $3.6 million in grants to support ten dredging projects along the state’s coastline last week. The grants, awarded through 2018 Navigational Dredging Pilot Program, are expected to remove roughly 188,000 cubic yards of sediment from the harbors of eleven different communities.Barnstable has been granted $1,000,000 to remove 44,000 cubic yards of sediment and coastal dune from the Cotuit Bay channel, increasing its width by 50-percent. The 2018 pilot program awards communities funding on a competitive basis, emphasizing on shovel-ready projects that already have secured permits from the local, state, and federal levels. The program also requires a 50-percent match commitment from municipalities receiving the funding.Update: July 26, 2018: In the Matter of Three Bays Preservation, Inc. and Massachusetts Audubon Society, Docket No. 2017-020 The Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Presiding Officer has ruled in favor of Three Bays Preservation, Inc. in an 84-page ruling. DEP Commissioner Suuberg now has 30 days to adopt and certify this decision. Contact Barnstable Clean Water Coalition HERE to see a copy of this Recommended Final Decision. Counsel advises that once certified, phase 1 dredging could begin on October 15th as the permits allow. Among the many benefits of this restoration project, water quality, in Cotuit Bay, is expected to improve by three to seven percent. Great for people and birds! To date this permitting process has taken over six years at a cost of over one million dollars.

 The Barnstable Clean Water Coalition 




Dead Neck Sampsons Island Dredging/Renourishment Project



Water Quality – Beach Status

View Current Water Quality & Beach Status Report for Town of Barnstable  HERE


The Pet Advisory has been lifted at Long Pond Marstons Mills.

Lovell’s pond has been downgraded from a Closure to a Pet Advisory

Pet Advisory Level

Lovell’s Pond, Cotuit

Shubael Pond, Marstons Mills

Cyanobacteria information:

Warning Level

Hinckley Pond, Barnstable

Parker Pond, Osterville



Cyanobacteria information:

CLOSED* No Swimming

Lovells Pond Beach, Cotuit

  • Moderate health risks for adults
  • Higher risk for babies and small children
  • Highest risks for pets

Update: 7/29/20

No Bottom, Cotuit   Cyanobacteria Warning has been lifted.

Update: 7/28/20

CLOSED* No Swimming

Lovells Pond Beach remains closed due to Cyanobacteria 

Update: 7/20/20 Keyes Beach is opened for swimming!

Holly Point Beach Association/Bearse pond’s Pet Advisory has been lifted.

Cyanobacteria information:

CLOSED* No Swimming

 Long Pond Marstons Mills (Posted at Long Pond Farms Beach)

Lovells Pond Beach, Cotuit

  • Higher risk for babies and small children
  • Moderate health risks for adults
  • Highest risks for pets

*minimum 2 week period of monitoring, before lifting closure

Update: 6/25/20

Keyes Beach, Hyannis continues to be closed due to bacteria levels above State standards.

The beach has been resampled.

Cyanobacteria Monitoring results:

Pet Advisory

Holly Point Beach Association/Bearse Pond

Shubael Pond


No Bottom Pond *, Cotuit is experiencing a cyanobacteria bloom- and the visibility is <4 ft. therefore swimming is not recommended for abutters and dogs should be kept out of the water. * There is no public access to this pond.

The Town of Barnstable shares data with Association to Preserve Cape Cod (APCC), which is updated for Barnstable on Thursday afternoons.

To check if your pond has been sampled and its current status please check the APCC Cyanomap HERE

Also, please remember the CDC guidance: “When in doubt it is best to stay out!” View CDC Site HERE

Cyanobacteria FAQ HERE

Tropical Storm Warning

Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for our area



– Chatham

– Falmouth

– Provincetown


– LATEST LOCAL FORECAST: Below tropical storm force wind

– Peak Wind Forecast: 20-30 mph with gusts to 45 mph

to 57 mph

– The wind threat has remained nearly steady from the
previous assessment.

– PLAN: Plan for hazardous wind of equivalent tropical storm

– PREPARE: Remaining efforts to protect property should be
completed as soon as possible. Prepare for limited wind

– ACT: Move to safe shelter before the wind becomes hazardous.