Volunteers help build 718-foot living shoreline in Portsmouth

Volunteers help build 718-foot living shoreline in Portsmouth

PORTSMOUTH, Va. — The Chesapeake Bay Foundation and the Elizabeth River Project joined volunteers in the mud along the shoreline to help search for live oysters to relocate them while the shoreline is being built up.

News 3 anchor Pari Cruz jumped in to help and got her hands dirty to help find and move live oysters to keep them safe while the new living shoreline is being installed.

Volunteers joined conservation organizations in preparation to build up a 718-foot shoreline at a private home. This will protect the property from erosion and help reduce pollution that enters the river.

Volunteers help build 718-foot living shoreline in Portsmouth

“Over the years, I’ve just noticed the shoreline has gone back probably a little over a meter now,” said homeowner Christian Berner.

It’s an important, but expensive project.

Homeowners can do so thanks to funding from the James River Association and a grant from the Virginia Environmental Endowment.

“It’s great because otherwise, it wouldn’t be that affordable,” said Berner. “And then all these wonderful volunteers come out here, as well.”

The temporary relocation of oysters is just the first step.

“Where I’m standing right now, there’s not a lot of oysters because it’s all muddy and all nasty, so oysters got to habitats so we are building structure for them to go to,” said Kati Grigsby from the Chesapeake Bay Foundation.

Over the coming days, volunteers will install oyster castles for the oysters to attach to that will create an oyster reef to break up wave energy, and also plant native plants to hold soil in place. They’ll also stack oyster shells to help conserve and preserve the shoreline.

Volunteers help build 718-foot living shoreline in Portsmouth

“The stakes that you see out on the shoreline, those are marking where the oyster castles will be. So that’s the point of protection that we’ll be starting,” said Barbara Gavin from the Elizabeth River Project.

This project will take a month or two to complete. It’s just one of more than 70 living shore installations the group has worked on in the last couple of years.

“Living shorelines are really critical aspect of habitat restoration on the Elizabeth River, it’s really important to preserve existing marsh and create new marsh when we have the opportunity,” said Gavin.

Thursday wasn’t the only day they’ll be doing this. Volunteers will still be needed from now through October to help haul sand, place oyster castles, and plant native plants here at this living shoreline.

If you’re interested in signing up, we’ve got more information on where you can sign up .

Like this post? Please share to your friends:
Leave a Reply

;-) :| :x :twisted: :smile: :shock: :sad: :roll: :razz: :oops: :o :mrgreen: :lol: :idea: :grin: :evil: :cry: :cool: :arrow: :???: :?: :!: