Hockomock Swamp is the largest remaining freshwater swamp in Massachusetts this 16,950-acre wetland is protected Area of Critical Environmental Concern (ACEC), a huge s73.5 billion gallon water reservoir. It is a unique and irreplaceable wildlife habitat, home to at least 13 rare and endangered species – the vast natural and scenic area in oasis of peace and quiet. For thousands of years the Hockomock Swamp has remained close to primeval wilderness, a soggy, trackless woodland of white cedar, red maple, cattail marsh, small ponds, and meandering streams.
During the Woodland period, the Native Americans depended on the swamp as an abundant source of game. They believed that if they camped once a year and an area known to them as “Mollie Ground”, the good spirits of the swamp would stay with them for the rest of the year. T he significance of the Hockomock Swamp’s archaeological resources is enormous; small stone hearths 15″ in diameter, a plumett stone fishing sinker, an ulu stone knife, and other artifacts have been unearthed, indicating a very early civilization.
The Massachusetts Division of Fish and Game own approximately 5,000 acres of this swamp, providing public access to recreational areas along the Nunckatessett Greenway. T he swamp is popular for hunting, fishing, boating, canoeing, swimming, and for the observation and study of plants and animals.
The fertile agricultural fields adjacent to the Hockomock Swamp wetlands, brooks, and rivers are of prime importance. West Bridgewater has used the Community Preservation Fund to secure permanent protection of the 116 acres of the Town’s first Agricultural Preservation Restriction (APR) agreement.