Building a Stronger Coast
Shad Staging a Comeback in “the Musky”

April 17, 2018 - Last spring, the Musconetcong River in New Jersey saw its first American shad in 250 years. The migratory fish could swim up six miles of “the Musky,” a tributary of the Delaware River and a designated “National Wild and Scenic River,” thanks to removal of obsolete dams, including the 150-foot-long one at Hughesville.

The Service, along with the Musconetcong Watershed Association, American Rivers, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, and other partners, removed the Hughesville dam in 2016 using funds for Hurricane Sandy recovery and resilience.

Net surveys last spring showed the most shad ever recorded in the Delaware River watershed. In addition to benefiting shad, the Hughesville Dam removal opened two miles of historical spawning and nursery habitat for alewife and blueback herring, jointly referred to as river herring. The dam removals will also improve water quality and reduce the risk of flooding.

Staff from the Service’s New Jersey Field Office, MWA, and Princeton Hydro stand ready to monitor shad numbers once the fish return to the upper Musconetcong this spring.

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Dam removals on the Wild-and-Scenic Musconetcong River in New Jersey have allowed American shad and river herring to return to their historical spawning grounds for the first time in 250 years.
Credit: USFWS


Hurricane Sandy Beach Restoration Project in New Report

Each spring, migrating shorebirds such as red knots stop at Delaware Bay beaches to feast on horseshoe crab eggs. Credit: Gregory Breese, USFWS

April 10, 2018 - A new report cites a $1.4-million project supported by federal funds for Hurricane Sandy recovery and resilience as a success in restoring and enhancing wildlife habitat. The project restored five New Jersey beaches, including Kimbles Beach, Reeds Beach, Moores Beach, Cooks Beach, and Pierces Point.

Each spring, migrating shorebirds, including red knots and ruddy turnstones, rely on Delaware Bay beaches for resting and refueling with horseshoe crab eggs. The restored beaches also offer storm protection for nearby residents.

“Reversing America’s Wildlife Crisis,” a collaboration of the National Wildlife Federation, the American Fisheries Society, and The Wildlife Society, highlights threats to the nation’s wildlife and promotes the need for dedicated funding for habitat restoration.

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Each spring, migrating shorebirds such as red knots stop at Delaware Bay beaches to feast on horseshoe crab eggs.
Credit: Gregory Breese, USFWS


Killing Them with Sweetness

Following a successful greenhouse trial, researchers applied sugar to Phragmites at Parker River National Wildlife Refuge. Credit: Gregg Moore, UNH

April 4, 2018 - Scientists in search of a sustainable way to control invasive Phragmites australis in salt marshes have turned to their kitchen cupboards. Dr. Susan Adamowicz (USFWS) worked with Dr. David Burdick (University of New Hampshire) to test using table sugar on Phragmites in the Great Marsh at Parker River National Wildlife Refuge, with sweet results. The research was supported by federal funding for Hurricane Sandy recovery and resilience.

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Following a successful greenhouse trial, researchers applied sugar to Phragmites at Parker River National Wildlife Refuge.
Credit: Gregg Moore, UNH


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Last updated: April 10, 2018