- From: X ` Man <dump-on-conservatives@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Sun, 03 Jun 2012 18:57:16 -0400
Project completed to restore tidal flow to New Haven's West River, welcome back wildlife
Saturday, June 2, 2012
NEW HAVEN — The weather was for the ducks Saturday and appropriately so. Save the Sound members and local and state officials flocked to Edgewood Park Duck Pond in the rain to celebrate the completion of the largest urban tidal restoration project in New England.
Save the Sound, a program of the Connecticut Fund for the Environment, re-established more than 80 acres of tidal marsh and seven miles of river habitat for fish and other wildlife by restoring tidal flow to the West River. To further help, volunteers planted about 6,000 marsh plants Saturday at the duck pond that will hold back sediment and provide nutrients and a food source for wildlife.
Gwen Macdonald, habitat restoration director at Save the Sound, explained that, in the 1920s, the city installed tide gates to control flooding and mosquitoes. The gates allowed the West River to flow into the Sound but closed during incoming tides. The one-way water movement eventually dried out the West River, changing the habitat and the species that live there.
“Three self-regulating tide gates will be installed over the next two weeks that will prevent too much water from flowing out to the Sound, which will bring back more native species,” she said.
Debbie Elkin, a volunteer with a shovel in hand, said she walks in the park every day and loves seeing new wildlife, so she would do anything she could to help restore the river, including wading into the marsh to help plant.
Kel Youngs, a teacher from Barnard Environmental Studies Magnet School, walked down to the river, clad in a rain jacket, because his students are studying the metals in the marsh mud and how they will change with the new tide gates.
“Your community has rallied to restore this river,” said Eric Schwaab, acting assistant secretary of commerce for conservation and management for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. “You understand the connection between healthy environments and healthy communities.”
But for many New Haven residents, it was about more than helping the environment. It was about their past and their children’s future.
“When I was a little girl, my father used to bring me down here and we would fish,” said Rep. Toni Walker (D-New Haven). “My father was blind, so we didn’t expect to catch anything but it was a time for him and me to bond and talk about life. Now we are giving families in New Haven the opportunity to bond and talk about life.”
The project was made possible by $2.2 million from the American Recovery Reinvestment Act and the NOAA Restoration Center.
“This shows that, no matter what is going on in Washington, D.C., or other parts of this country, in Connecticut we can get things done,” said Department of Energy and Environmental Protection Commissioner Dan Esty.
As the river begins to return to its original state, river herring and eel populations are being built back up. Save the Sound Executive Director Don Strait explained that the repopulation is important, not just for places like the Edgewood Park Duck Pond, but for the state. He explained that fish leave estuaries and swim into the ocean, which supports commercial and tourist fishing.
“(Now) native plants will grow, and fish will spawn,” said Walker. “It’s as though you’ve given nature a booster shot.”
- - -
Great news. We spent a lot of time playing in Edgewood Park when we were kids in New Haven.
- Prev by Date: Re: The utter stupidity of the stand your ground law
- Next by Date: Re: How the Confederate Navy (indirectly) ended a war in the Pacific Northwest
- Previous by thread: Re: AUXWEA course
- Next by thread: ~~** Two Special Baby Designs & Unique NEW Offer !! **~~