Friday, April 19, 2024

Wetland restoration efforts underway at CB, volunteers needed

A restoration project is underway at Carolina Beach State Park to rehabilitate 10 acres of tidal marsh. (Courtesy North Carolina Coastal Federation)

CAROLINA BEACH — A New Hanover County beach town is seeking volunteers to help restore wetlands in partnership with the state.

The North Carolina Coastal Federation is looking for assistance June 26 and 27 to help plant thousands of marsh plants to complete a habitat restoration project at Carolina Beach State Park.

The Coastal Federation and NC State Parks have been working to rehabilitate 10 acres of tidal marsh between the park’s Sugarloaf and Swamp trails. Funding for the work comes from the Natural Resource Damage Assessment Trustees.

First, crews removed Phragmites — a type of invasive, harmful reed grass species — throughout the site. Contractor Backwater Environmental then regraded the area and created a shallow wetland.

Next week volunteers will plant the newly formed wetland with thousands of native grasses to restore the tidal marsh.

Park Ranger Jesse Anderson said in a press release involving residents in projects such as this are an opportunity to see firsthand how important restoration is.

“To have and share a sense of ownership toward directly benefiting and impacting the habitat, knowing you are setting our furry and feathered friends up for future success, is a great feeling,” Anderson said. “All while having fun and getting muddy planting native plants. And yes, do expect to get muddy!”

To sign up for a volunteer slot, visit this site. All necessary equipment will be provided, as well as lunch and refreshments.

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