73 acres of valuable wetlands increase habitat restoration efforts in Dollar Bay
- February 11, 2021
(Kemah, TX – February 11, 2021) – Construction is underway to add 73 acres of wetland restoration and shoreline protection in Dollar Bay – Moses Lake. The joint conservation effort between Galveston Bay Foundation and local, state, and federal partners will add 47 marsh grass terraces of intertidal marsh complex to protect and restore an area that has suffered from harmful erosion impacts. The new project is directly adjacent to Galveston Bay Foundation’s recently acquired 106-acre coastal prairie tract which will serve as a buffer for the wetlands.
“We are working together to restore marsh in an area that was historically marsh, but became open water because of subsidence and erosion,” said Bob Stokes, president of Galveston Bay Foundation. “Fundamentally, more habitat creates more fish. And we are proud to work with such great partners on the effort.”
First, breakwater structures will be constructed to trip waves, halt shoreline erosion, and accrete sediments shoreward of the structures. Next, marsh terraces will be constructed to restore elevations suitable to support estuarine emergent marsh vegetation. And post-construction, project sites will be planted with native marsh vegetation.
“This project speaks to the power of partnership in restoring and enhancing our shared coastal bays and estuaries,” said Pat Murray, president of Coastal Conservation Association. “We are excited to be a part of this initiative and look forward to watching this important marsh area flourish again.”
This project builds upon years of tried and developed techniques for marsh protection and restoration along the Gulf Coast and within the same project area. Successful and existing erosion response measures already in place in other areas of Moses Lake include a 1,600-foot section of rock breakwater structures constructed in 2002, a 2,400-foot section constructed in 2012, and a 1.3-mile section completed in 2018.
Following all three projects, Galveston Bay Foundation volunteers planted smooth cordgrass to reestablish fringing marsh and the organization plans to host marsh grass plantings at the Dollar Bay project as well. Project partners hope to see similar results when this project is complete.
The transformative effort is being funded by Galveston Bay Foundation, CCA Texas, Building Conservation Trust, Shell, Ducks Unlimited, National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and NOAA.
About Galveston Bay Foundation
Established in 1987, the Galveston Bay Foundation is a conservation non-profit organization. Its mission is to preserve and enhance Galveston Bay as a healthy and productive place for generations to come. It implements diverse programs in land preservation, habitat restoration, water quality and quantity, STEM education, and advocacy. To learn more, visit galvbay.org or follow @GBayFoundation on Twitter.