2013-07-05 / Community

Rain Doesn’t Dampen Jamaica Bay Restoration


Plugs of Spartina alterniflora (saltmarsh grass) on Ruler's Bar Marsh, Jamaica Bay. Plugs of Spartina alterniflora (saltmarsh grass) on Ruler's Bar Marsh, Jamaica Bay. Despite bad weather, the Jamaica Bay restoration continues.

According to Don Riepe, Director, Northeast Chapter at the American Littoral Society, “Neither rain, nor an outright downpour will keep the Littoral Society ‘Bayrats’ from their appointed rounds” of planting Spartina alterniflora ( saltmarsh cord grass) on the newly-created Ruler's Bar marsh in Jamaica Bay.

The 8-acre site is being planted with 88,000 plugs of Spartina to help reconstruct the eroding marsh.

Bayrats is the Society’s affectionate name for the group of young students hired by the Littoral Society for the summer to help with the project.

"They have been a terrific workforce,” said Elizabeth Stoehr, the marsh project coordinator for the Littoral Society. "I wish we could hire them full-time.”


Summer hire Andrew O'Reilly of Broad Channel working in downpour. Summer hire Andrew O'Reilly of Broad Channel working in downpour. Aside from Ruler's Bar, a larger 14-acre marsh named Black Wall is being seeded for comparison. By next season we should know whether the small plugs or just seeding works best in terms of survival and growth rates.

The marshes of Jamaica Bay are perhaps the most important component of the bay's ecology as they provide a nursery ground for many species of fish and marine life.

They also act as a bulwark against coastal storms by absorbing wave energy before it reaches the mainland - in this case the homes of the Broad Channel community.

The Littoral Society, together with the Jamaica Bay Ecowatchers are taking the lead and partnering with the NY State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), NY City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), National Park Service, and Army Corps of Engineers to help bring back the bay's valuable marsh habitat.


Littoral Society marsh restoration workers. Littoral Society marsh restoration workers. For more info about the Bay's ecology, field trips and how you can help contact the Littoral Society at 718-474-0896 or e-mail: donriepe@gmail.com

Return to top


Email Us
Contact Us

Copyright 1999 - 2014 Wave Publishing Co. All Rights Reserved

Neighborhoods | History