2012-09-14 / Community

Harvesting Jamaica Bay’s Seeds And Debris


Group of volunteers from the Church of God helped collect Spartina seed heads at Black Bank marsh in Jamaica Bay for a restoration planting project Group of volunteers from the Church of God helped collect Spartina seed heads at Black Bank marsh in Jamaica Bay for a restoration planting project A veritable army of 140 strong, happy volunteers from the Church of God descended on the bay this past weekend to work with the American Littoral Society on their New York State Coastal Cleanup Day. “As usual, they did a great job of ‘harvesting’ all kinds of debris from the shoreline,“ said Don Riepe, the society’s Northeast Chapter director. “The most impressive object was the whole rusted chassis of an abandoned car, which weighed about 800 pounds!“ In total, they collected over 4,000 pounds of floatable debris. While most worked the shorelines of the Jamaica Bay refuge and North Channel Bridge, some helped ranger Colleen Sorbera of Gateway NRA remove invasive vines from trees and shrubs at the refuge.

A third group worked with Elizabeth Manclarke on the harvesting of Spartina grass seed heads for planting next spring at Ruler’s Bar and Black Wall marshes. The Littoral Society together with the Jamaica Bay Ecowatchers are hoping to collect about 250 pounds of Spartina alterniflora seeds during the next two weeks. The seeds will be brought to a nursery in New Jersey for storage and germination over the winter. Next spring they will be planted in the marshes by volunteers from the two groups. If interested in helping out this fall or next spring call the American Littoral Society 718-318-9344; e-mail: donriepe@gmail.com. For more information re: marsh restoration projects in Jamaica Bay, go to the Ecowatchers website: www.jamaicabayecowatchers.org



A group of strong, young members of the Church of God remove an 800 pound rusted car chassis from the marsh shoreline. A group of strong, young members of the Church of God remove an 800 pound rusted car chassis from the marsh shoreline.

A smiling Church of God volunteer stands ready with her sickle to cut Spartina seed heads A smiling Church of God volunteer stands ready with her sickle to cut Spartina seed heads

(L. to R.) Elizabeth Manclarke, asst. director of the Littoral Society; Dan Mundy, Sr., president of the EcoWatchers, and Lisa Scheppke, the society’s abandoned boat removal coordinator helped collect and spread out all the seed heads for drying at an NPS site. (L. to R.) Elizabeth Manclarke, asst. director of the Littoral Society; Dan Mundy, Sr., president of the EcoWatchers, and Lisa Scheppke, the society’s abandoned boat removal coordinator helped collect and spread out all the seed heads for drying at an NPS site.

About 140 members of the Church of God worked with Don Riepe and the Littoral Society on cleaning up the shoreline at the North Channel Bridge. A total of approximately 4,000 pounds of shoreline debris was cleaned from three sites in Jamaica Bay. About 140 members of the Church of God worked with Don Riepe and the Littoral Society on cleaning up the shoreline at the North Channel Bridge. A total of approximately 4,000 pounds of shoreline debris was cleaned from three sites in Jamaica Bay.

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