A major development unfolded this month at Great Meadows Marsh in Stratford, as our team finally restored a natural tidal flow to the site. The results of this effort will truly change visitor experience for the better.
Previously, there was not an established tidal creek in the marsh – causing freshwater to pool on site. In summer, these pools became the perfect breeding ground for mosquitos, making it nearly impossible for visitors to enjoy a day outdoors.
To help the water drain, we created a creek across several acres. Excavators were used to widen the channel and allow more flow. The creek is now about 15-20 feet wide and allows saltwater to enter when the tide comes up, keeping the freshwater mosquito population down.
Saltwater also aids in keeping invasive species (specifically phragmites) at-bay while allowing native marsh grasses to flourish.
With the creek completed, work on-site has shifted to creating hummocks, or small mounds of earth (we’ll tell you more in our February update!). This is a strategy we are piloting to create elevated habitat for the Saltmarsh Sparrow. Then, in April-June, we’ll turn our focus to planting ~170,000 native marsh grasses and shrubs.
Know anyone who might enjoy volunteering for this big planting effort? Send them a link to subscribe to this email.