This Little Gift Big Smile is dear to me because I grew up along the Jersey Shore. My father and I used to walk along the beaches and the shells featured are from one of those times.
The link below is a website that can offer ways that you can help heal the bay, even if it is just a click through to the site!
some of the featured images are from the Littoral Society website
Sandy Hook Bay is a triangular arm of the Raritan Bay along the coast of northern New Jersey. It is formed along the south side of Lower New York Bay by Sandy Hook, a spit of land that protects the bay from the open Atlantic Ocean. Sitting in the shadow of New York City and the Port of New York and New Jersey and home to the American Littoral Society for more than 50 years, Sandy Hook Bay is our region’s urban estuary, holding onto important elements of its rich ecological history and gaining traction along a course of recovery from years of industrialization.
The Shrewsbury River is a tidal estuary flowing into Sandy Hook Bay and ultimately the Atlantic Ocean. Part of the Shrewsbury Navesink estuary, it is home to a diversity of marine and bird life including bluefish (snappers), striped bass, fluke, blue claw crabs, Atlantic menhaden (bunker), black sea bass, tautog, multiple species of killifish, Atlantic croaker, great blue heron, snowy and great egrets, osprey, kingfisher, double breasted and great cormorant, least terns, oystercatcher, and many species of gulls. It is also foraging area for bald eagles with the nearest known nest in the headwaters of the Navesink near the Swimming River Reservoir.
Barnegat Bay has been in recent serious ecological decline due to numerous factors including overdevelopment of its watershed lands.
Studies have linked the decline in Barnegat Bay’s water quality and negative ecosystem impacts to multiple pollution sources including a recent USGS report which attributed pollution loads as: 22% Atmospheric Deposition (e.g. coal power plants & automobile emissions) 12% Groundwater Introduction and 66% from Land Use and Development (e.g. Stormwater runoff, non-point source “stormwater” pollution).
In recent years, it has become evident that many existing stormwater basins are not functioning in a way that fully utilizes their pollution reduction potentiall and some are even adding to flooding conditions due to compacted soils that do not properly ‘recharge’ storm events into the ground . There are over 2,700 stormwater basins located in the Barnegat Bay watershed and the American Littoral Society is committed to researching and implementing innovative approaches to retrofit them to improve the health of the Bay. In essence, we are finding ways to “replumb” the bay and reduce runoff through “Green Infrastructure” techniques which also recharge greater quantities of stormwater.
Leave a Comment