The Friends of Maine Coastal Islands National Wildlife Refuge (FOMCI) was founded as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization in 2003. It is formerly known as the Friends of Maine Seabird Islands. As one of over 185 U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) “Friends” organizations around the country, our mission has been to support the Maine Coastal Islands National Wildlife Refuge (MCINWR) in its efforts to conserve, protect and enhance the rich diversity of coastal habitats, seabirds and other wildlife.

We focus on advocacy efforts, public outreach, volunteer management and fundraising to support our mission.  Since most Refuge visitors have not been able to experience the seabird islands firsthand, the organization works to bring the seabirds to visitors through models and displays of seabird nesting islands, classroom exhibits, an art gallery and a theater where they are exposed to the sights and sounds of seabird nesting islands.

We operate with a Board of Directors and over 30 volunteers. A timeline of milestones includes:


secured financing to purchase property at 9 Water Street in Rockland


transferred title of 9 Water Street to US Fish and Wildlife Service


hired a part-time Program Coordinator to lead education and outreach efforts


established Nature Store in newly opened MCI Visitor Center


opened the Art Gallery at the MCI Visitor Center


renamed FOMSI to  Friends of Maine Coastal Islands National Wildlife Refuge (FOMCI)


created an Annual Juried Art Show at the MCI Visitor Center


expanded FOMCI educational and outreach programs


created new media to tell the story of FOMCI and the MCI Refuge

Our work is guided by the USFWS Friends Policy and we are affiliated with the National Wildlife Refuge Association, but operate as an independent organization.  We work closely with other conservation groups and partners including:  National Audubon, Maine Coast Heritage Trust, The Nature Conservancy, Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and more.

The Future of Maine's Seabirds is in Your Hands!

Your Gift is vitally important to support the conservation of Maine’s coastal islands for wildlife and the restoration and management of seabird colonies. Donations to Friends of Maine Coastal Islands National Wildlife Refuge help fund educational programs for children and adults at the Visitor Center, as well as outreach in the community on behalf of the Refuge.