This spring the American Littoral Society will be conducting school field trips at the Wreck Pond restoration site. The field trips are part of the pond restoration project and are intended to continue educational programs begun at some area schools over the winter.
Field trips will involve students from St. Catherine School in Spring Lake, NJ, Wall High School in Wall Township, NJ, and Communication High School, which is part of the Monmouth County Vocational School District. Field trips will run through May and into the beginning of June.
The task seemed imposing at the start of the day: Turn 50 tons of whelk shell into a reef off a remote beach on the Delaware Bay using little more than manual labor.
But thanks to 70 volunteers, aided by staff from the American Littoral Society, Conserve Wildlife Foundation of NJ and the US Fish and Wildlife Service, that mountain of shells turned into something worth shell-a-brating.
The work was done as part of the Third Annual Shell-A-Bration, an event which has brought together people from nearby communities to help protect and restore beaches damaged during Hurricane Sandy in 2012. This year's event was held on Saturday, April 8 at Thompsons Beach in Maurice River Township, NJ.
It took awhile, but the TV program involving the Littoral Society's horseshoe crab tagging events is finally available for anyone to watch.
Last year, a crew from Xploration: Awesome Planet covered horseshoe crab tagging on the Delaware bayshore. The show, hosted by Philippe Cousteau Jr., grandson of the legendary Jacques Cousteau, explores the most spectacular places – on the earth, inside the earth, and above the earth.
The tagging event became part of an Awesome Planet episode on animal migrations. In the linked video you'll see Habitat Restoration Coordinator Shane Goodshall and Habitat Restoration Technician Quinn Whitesall as they lead a tagging event.
Sitting on a Dock Near the Bay
The American Littoral Society Rumson St. Patrick’s Day parade experience was a big hit on March 12, thanks in no small part to Doug Douty of the Lusty Lobster and his walking oyster bar.
Our float highlighted the Society’s "Shuck It, Don't Chuck It!" oyster shell recycling program and the “Bags in the Bay” pilot project being expanded to the Two Rivers Area as part of ongoing Society efforts to help clean up New Jersey’s bays and estuaries.
The Bags on the Bay restoration research project has been underway in Barnegat Bay since 2016. The project involves hanging bags of recycled shells off docks. The bags are periodically pulled out of the water to catalog the species inhabiting the bag with a heavy emphasis on searching for natural oyster spat on the shells. Once analyzed, the shells are re-bagged and rehung.
It took us long into the night to reach our next port. We went from the relatively populated area of Braganza to the dark heart of this coastal region of Viseu. In three trucks, we caravanned through a maze of remnant tropical rainforests, cattle pasture an impenetrable second-growth woodland. Along the rain-slicked red clay road, small and desperate looking towns popped out of nowhere always looking like the past was a better day. The road cut through countless mangrove forests that define this region. We reached Viseu too late to do anything but find a place to stay the night.
A bridge across the many rivers from Braganca to Visiu, Brazil. Photo by Christophe Buiden
On Saturday, January 16 the American Littoral Society held a training session for people who would like to be part of the citizen science monitoring program at Wreck Pond.
Additional training sessions are scheduled for January 21 and 28 at 10 a.m. in Spring Lake Borough Hall, 423 Warren Avenue, Spring Lake, NJ. At them volunteers will be trained in the tests they need to conduct and how to use the equipment that will be provided.
Wreck Pond is a 73-acre coastal pond located on the border of Spring Lake and Sea Girt, NJ. The American Littoral Society, in partnership with several public and private entities, helped construct a fish passage that will connect the pond to the ocean. The passage — made from 600 feet of box culvert — will improve water quality in the pond, provide better flood control to the surrounding area, and allow fish to move into and out of the pond.
Those who become Wreck Pond Citizen Science Monitors, will help us gain valuable information on the effects of the fish passage on pond water level, salinity and temperature. Bird monitors will help track long-term use of the pond and the surrounding areas by shorebirds including endangered Piping Plover (Charadrius melodus) and threatened Red Knots (Calidris canutus). The information collected in this program will ultimately assist us in determining the overall success of the project.
If you are interested in becoming a Wreck Pond Citizen Science Monitor or would like more information, please contact Julie Schumacher at: Julie@littoralsociety.org.
Bradley Beach Dune Planting Event
We need your help to plant dune grass in Bradley Beach, NJ.
The Jersey Shore Chapter of the Surfrider Foundation and American Littoral Society will hold a dune planting event in Bradley Beach on Saturday, Jan. 28. 2017 at 10:30 a.m. Participants should gather at the pavilion on 5th and Ocean Avenue.
Last spring, hundreds of volunteers came out to help us plant thousands of dune grass plugs on top of the dunes on the beach in Bradley Beach. It was a great success and we want to expand the dunes further this time.