It was noted in 1891 that the dwelling house at the station was “altogether too small for the needs of the engineer” and that additional accommodation for coal was also required. After plans and specifications for the necessary additions were prepared, tenders were invited. The bids received, however, were considered excessive so the work was instead carried out in 1892 under the supervision of David Ross, carpenter of the Dominion steamer Landsdowne. Keeper Dinsmore added a ten-foot-long and seven-foot-wide porch to the dwelling in 1894, and David Ross returned to the island that year to build two reservoirs for the steam engine and install a new coal derrick.
Due to acid in the water, the tubes in the fog alarm’s boiler used to heat the water to create high-pressure steam had to be replaced about every four months. A second boiler, made by Messrs. Carrier, Laine, & Co. at a cost of $1,386, joined the old boiler at the station in June of 1896. A two-story addition, containing five rooms, was attached to the keeper’s dwelling that same year at a cost of $400. A new steam boiler was substituted for the old one in 1905.
The station was automated in 1984, and in 2008, the fog alarm building was demolished, leaving the square tower standing by itself. A skeletal tower was erected on the island in October 2015 to display a modern flashing light. As the lantern room atop the old tower obscured the new light in certain directions, the lantern room was removed and was helicoptered to Swallow Tail Peninsula on October 28, 2015. The lantern room from Great Duck Island can now be seen near Swallowtail Lighthouse, and in June 2017, it was equipped with a DCB-36 beacon believed to have been used on Machias Seal Island at some point.
Kelly Anne Loughery, founding president of the New Brunswick Lighthouse Society, had the opportunity to visit the island. "To date," she said, "this has been my most uninspiring, inhospitable lighthouse visit. The lighthouse is located on a flat barren island infested by muskrats. Every step is either in one of their holes or something even less appealing, and the inside of the lighthouse was laden with mold. I couldn’t wait to leave. I can’t imagine being a lightkeeper there."
Keepers: Samuel G. Dinsmore (1886 – 1906), Rupert Burnham (1906 – 1914), Manfred L. Daggett (1915 – 1916), Chick S. Stanley (1917 – 1922) Clayton E. Small (1922 – at least 1937), Jack Russell (at least 1974 – 1984).