Commonwealth of Massachusetts
Citizens' Guide to State Services

Published by
William Francis Galvin
Secretary of the Commonwealth
Citizen Information Service

Recreation: Fishing/Hunting/Trapping

M7 Division of Fisheries and Wildlife

M8 Division of Marine Fisheries

M7 Division of Fisheries and Wildlife (MassWildlife)
Division of Fisheries and Wildlife
Department of Fish and Game
251 Causeway Street, Suite 400
Boston, MA 02114
Tel: 617-626-1590
Fax: (617) 626-1517
Natural Heritage Endangered Species Program: 508-389-6360

The Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife is responsible for protecting and enhancing the state's inland fish, wildlife and plant resources for the benefit an enjoyment of its citizens. Among its many programs are included: the acquisition and management of more than 100 thousand acres of wildlife lands, research and regulatory authority over the use of the state’s renewable fish and wildlife resources, inventory, mapping and restoration of rare species and habitats, environmental review under the state Endangered Species and Wetlands Protection Act, propagation and stocking of more than 600 thousand trout annually, hunter education, information and outreach services and wildlife-oriented curriculums schools. Administrative, regulatory, land acquisition and financial matters are addressed by MassWildlife’s Boston office while fisheries, wildlife, endangered species, information and education programs are coordinated by the Westborough Field Headquarters. MassWildlife’s five District Offices provide technical assistance to the public regarding wildlife questions and problems, outdoor recreation, and regional wildlife lands. The division is responsible for the issuance of rules and regulations pertaining to fishing, hunting, and sporting, and also issues state licenses and permits for these activities at its wildlife district headquarters and in Westborough and Boston. The regional offices are listed below. These licenses are also available at most local city or town halls, and many sporting goods stores. The division also issues special permits for research, salvage, exhibits, propagation, rehabilitation, problem animal control permits (exams given at Westborough office) and taxidermy through the Boston office.  

Regional Offices:

Westborough Field Headquarters
One Rabbit Hill Road
Westborough, MA 01581
Tel: 508-389-6300
Fax: 508-389-7890

85 Fitchburg Road
Ayer, MA 01432
Tel: 978-772-2145
Fax: 978-772-2147

East Street
Belchertown, MA 01007
Tel: 413-323-7632
Fax: (413) 323-9623

195 Bournedale Road
Buzzards Bay, MA 02532
Tel: 508-759-3406
Fax: 508-759-0381

88 Old Winsor Road
Dalton, MA 01226
Tel: 413- 684-1646
Fax: 413-684-1705

211 Temple Street
West Boylston, MA 01583
Tel: 508-835-3607
Fax: 508-835-4943


M8 Division of Marine Fisheries
Department of Fish and Game
251 Causeway Street, Suite 400
Boston, MA 02114-2152
Tel: 617-626-1520
Fax: 617-626-1509

The programs of this division include biological investigations and inventories of the state's marine resources, investigations into the causes and effects of fish kills and pollution, assessment of the impact of coastal alteration and power plant siting and generation, and the provision of basic information and guidelines for the effective management and development of marine resources and marine recreational fisheries in the Commonwealth. The division also has many biologists to aid recreational fishermen. Its Commercial Fisheries Bureau's activities encompass extensive services to commercial fishermen, processors, and dealers; technical assistance to those involved in shellfish propagation management and harvest; and the administration of state aid funds to municipalities for local shellfish management and enforcement programs. It issues licenses for lobstering, commercial shellfishing, and commercial finfishing; also, anyone engaged in the wholesale or retail trade of raw fish, shellfish, lobsters, and raw bait must obtain a dealer permit from the division. Non-commercial (family) lobster and crab permits are issued by the division. All licenses are issued at the Boston office and may be purchased by mail. Shellfish permits are required by each local jurisdiction. 

Regional Offices:

Annisquam River Marine Fisheries Station
30 Emerson Avenue
, MA 01930
Tel: 978-282-0308
Fax: 617-727-3337

Shellfish Purification Plant
84 82nd Street
, MA 01950-4323
Tel: 978-465-3553
Fax: 978-465-5947

Quest Campus
1213 Purchase St. - 3rd Floor
New Bedford, MA 02740
Tel: 508-990-2860
Fax: 508-990-0449

NRC Campus
838 South Rodney French Blvd
New Bedford, MA 02744
Tel: (no tel or permits at this location)
Fax: 508-910-6342

Martha's Vineyard Field Station
Recreational Fisheries Information and Special Studies
Shirley Road 
Vineyard Haven
, MA 02568
Lobster Studies and Information Tel: 508-693-0060 
P.O. Box 9
Recreational Fisheries Information Tel: 508-693-4372
P.O. Box 68
Fax: 508-693-4157
(no permits at this location)

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