Building a Stronger Coast
Prime Hook National Wildlife Refuge marsh restoration effort recognized as a national model for climate adaptation leadership

a channel of water and a machine blowing soil in the air

September 23, 2019 - The Tidal Marsh and Barrier Beach Restoration Project at Prime Hook National Wildlife Refuge is the recipient of a 2019 Climate Adaptation Leadership Award for Natural Resources in the “Federal Government” category.

The award was established in 2016 to recognize outstanding and innovative projects “that are advancing the resilience of our nation’s valuable fish, wildlife, and plant resources in a changing climate.” The Prime Hook project is acknowledged for its “exemplary leadership in reducing climate-related threats and promoting adaptation.”

The award was presented Sept. 23 at the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies (AFWA) Annual Meeting in St. Paul, Minn.

News release

Twenty-five miles of channels were dredged as part of the Prime Hook marsh restoration project supported by federal funding for Hurricane Sandy recovery.
Credit: David Eisenhauer/USFWS

Refuges respond to sea level rise

a woman standing in salt marsh grass

September 12, 2019 - At national wildlife refuges up and down the East Coast, flooding and erosion caused by sea level rise, along with other effects of a changing climate, are jeopardizing wildlife habitat, water quality, and recreational opportunities. Managers are also faced with shrinking staffs and nearby development.

While federal funding following Hurricane Sandy restored natural systems that benefit wildlife and people on many refuges, pressures persist. Results of a study by the U.S. Geological Survey encourage partnerships between refuges and local stakeholders to address continuing threats. Adding acres farther inland is one strategy for addressing an encroaching ocean.

News Story

Biologist Nancy Pau oversees restoration of the Great Marsh on Parker River National Wildlife Refuge to benefit wildlife and nearby communities.
Credit: Steve Droter

In the news: Reefs beef up bay beaches

two red birds and horseshoe crabs on a sandy beach

Aug. 13. 2019 - Volunteers helped fortify beaches along Delaware Bay last weekend as part of a "shell-a-bration" event at Cook's Beach. 75 volunteers helped to build three reefs, made of bags of oyster shells, in one of the largest efforts of its kind to date.

These "living shoreline" oyster reefs are being built at 5 beaches that were restored with federal funding following Hurricane Sandy. The project is led by the American Littoral Society, who said the reefs have been successful so far in stopping erosion and improving habitat for migratory shorebirds such as red knot.

Read the story

Caption/credit: Red knot in Delaware Bay.
Credit: Gregory Breese/USFWS

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Last updated: March 6, 2019