Building a Stronger Coast
In the News: How Hurricane Sandy Benefited New Jersey Wetlands

Piping plover. Credit: Don Freiday/USFWS

October 21, 2016 – As the Press of Atlantic City writes in a recent article, “Sometimes there is an upside to disaster, even one as big as Hurricane Sandy.” The upside at Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge has been the birds – especially piping plovers. 
Refuge manager Paul Castelli said Sandy washed over the dunes, creating more habitat for beach-nesting birds like endangered piping plover. This was some of the good news Castelli and others discussed at a recent meeting about coastal restoration efforts underway to protect New Jersey beaches and communities from future storms. 
Also highlighted in the article are USFWS Hurricane-Sandy funded projects to create a 3,000-foot living shoreline at Gandy’s Beach and restore coastal marshes and wetlands at Forsythe.

Read the article

Piping plover
Credit: Don Freiday/USFWS

Photo Slideshow: People Behind a Stronger Coast, Matt Whitbeck and Miles Simmons

Matt Whitbeck at Blackwater NWR.

October 19, 2016 – Four years after Hurricane Sandy struck the Atlantic Coast, we are celebrating those who continue to make their communities #StrongAfterSandy. 
As the Chesapeake Bay area continues to experience sea levels rising at three to four times faster than the global average, the work being done to protect coastal ecosystems here is also protecting the surrounding population. At Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge, biologist Matt Whitbeck and biological technician Miles Simmons are on the forefront of building resiliency within their coastal community.

View the first installment of this photo series

Matt Whitbeck at Blackwater NWR.

In the News: A Marsh Reborn

Prime Hook beach and grass. Credit: Citizen Racecar

October 17, 2016 – Our Prime Hook refuge restoration project is taking root, writes Ron MacArthur in the Cape Gazette.
The $38 million dollar project has recently been completed – breaches filled, dunes restored, 500,000 plugs of beach grass planted, 1,000 acres of marsh seeded, and 25 miles of channels dredged to restore tidal hydrology at the refuge. 
The next step is to wait and see how nature comes back over the next few years. Already there are encouraging signs – marsh grasses are returning, fish are finding new habitat in the channels, and saltwater is no longer flooding nearby farm fields. And this summer staff observed record numbers of wildlife including horseshoe crabs and shorebirds. 
The work at Prime Hook is considered one of the largest coastal marsh restoration projects on the East Coast, funded by federal aid in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. 

Read the article

Prime Hook beach and grass.
Credit: Citizen Racecar


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Last updated: October 19, 2016