The Prime Hook National Wildlife Refuge Barrier Beach has entered the American Shore and Beach Preservation Association (ASBPA) annual list of the nation’s best restored beaches.
This restoration scheme was a federal project funded by the Hurricane Sandy Relief Act, restoring two miles of a beach/berm/dune/back barrier complex with 1.4 million cubic yards of sand.
According to ASBPA, this is one of the few restoration projects that is totally dedicated to protecting and increasing the resiliency of wetland resources.
The wetlands and marshes within the Delaware River Estuary have long been nurseries for juvenile fish. The marshes supply the abundant game fish to the sport and commercial fishing industries, which are economic engines providing vital income to local economies within the estuary.
The project restored two miles of barrier beach that protects landward marshes from wave attack. The restoration placed approximately 1.4 million cubic yards of sand on the barrier beach to construct a protective beach and dune system. An unintended result of this restoration was the establishment of a Least Tern nesting colony and the first ever Piping Plover nest.