'Tis the season to recycle Christmas trees! For the third year in a row, the Littoral Society is collecting trees for use at our Slade Dale Sanctuary living shoreline project.
Trees can be dropped off by anyone at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church (708 NJ-88, Point Pleasant, NJ), in the field behind the parking lot (the location will be marked). Point Pleasant borough residents can leave their trees curbside for normal Dept. of Public Works pickup. Be sure to remove all ornaments, tinsel and lights before discarding the tree.
For more information, contact Zack Royle at the American Littoral Society, email@example.com.
In 2019, the American Littoral Society constructed a living shoreline at Slade Dale Sanctuary, a 13-acre preserve located in Point Pleasant, NJ. Living shorelines use nature-based methods to stabilize shorelines while also creating or enhancing habitat, increasing biodiversity, filtering water, storing carbon and protecting communities. They also tend to be far less expensive to construct and maintain than hard structures. The bonus is that living shorelines can grow over time.
In the spring, trees that have been collected will be put into into branchbox breakwaters, which are wooden structures set in Beaverdam Creek, that are designed to control erosion by using trees and brush to slow currents and waves, as well as capture the sediment being carried in the water. The breakwaters to help reduce wave energy which can erode the shoreline and allow the salt marsh at the sanctuary to build back up.
The shoreline at Slade Dale Sanctuary has eroded approximately 600 feet since 1930. The sanctuary’s pine-oak forest, hardwood swamp, and salt marsh provide a space of protected wilderness, providing nursery habitat for fish, and foraging habitat for ospreys, egrets, and bald eagles, among other species.
Because they are designed as a natural solution, the trees in the breakwaters must be replaced periodically. The goal is to create a wider marsh and limit the reach of saltwater that has been affecting nearby trees. Besides providing more space for animals to live and feed, the marsh will also help protect neighboring communities.